Bermuda Adventure – Beyond the Beach

Adventure Travel Trade Association “Adventure Angels”.

Earlier this winter I was invited by the Bermuda Tourism Authority to learn more about the island as an “Adventure Destination.” This is the tale of my Bermuda adventure!

Bermuda is known around the world for its pink sand beaches, bright clear turquoise waters, golf courses, colorful architecture and sailing culture. But it is much more than that.

This is why I along with three other adventure travel advisors – all members of the Adventure Travel Trade Association and self proclaimed “Adventure Angels” – were invited, to experience a different side of Bermuda, “Beyond the Beach.” We arrived with great expectations for our four-day adventure. Continue reading…

Sunny Side Positive Posts

One of my Facebook friends posted this plea in late January that we “Stop POSTING POLITICS EVERYONE!!” Okay I get it. Although I’m excited that so many citizens are getting involved, organizing their energy and action, there also is so much, too much true news, false news, fake news; much of it confusing, constant and all consuming.

So, just after I saw my friend’s post, I decided if she and others were tired of politics that I would start posting something positive and non-political on Facebook each and every day for 100 days, the first 100 days of the new administration. That’s a lot of positivism and I thought my idea would go viral. That didn’t happen but what did happen is that a lot of good positive things have been happening to me now that I’m focusing on the best moment of every day.  Mind you, I’m still staying active and engaged locally however more of my energy and attention is on the sunny side starting with my first simple positive post on January 25th. “Post #1 TODAY the sun is shining in Portland, Maine!”

February posts begin with the positive news that there is new growth on my Christmas cactus. On Groundhog Day an old friend shared a group photo from 1986 when I was a ski instructor at Boston Mills in Peninsula Ohio.  “Ski Ohio?” you may ask. “Are there mountains in Ohio?”  No, there are no mountains but there are valleys and the Cuyahoga Valley is where I learned from the best instructors how to ski and more importantly the skills I needed to help other people learn to ski – Something I’ve been doing almost every winter ever since!

As an independent travel advisor and group trip coordinator, I enjoy a flexible schedule however working for myself can get overwhelming at times. I made sure to post how very grateful I am to be connected with many strong, smart, caring people that help support me and my work, especially my peeps at coworking space PelotonLabs; my amazing co-working family that share weekly yummy crockpot lunches and an occasional spontaneous late night dinner!

From the middle of the month and through February Vacation week, most of my positive posts have been  about volunteering as a ski instructor for New England Disabled Sports and helping teach some international ski groups at Loon Mountain Resort in Lincoln, NH.

New snow in two storms kept me up in the White Mountains and I got to take first track runs after the big storm with Loon Ski Patrol pals before meeting my group of lads from Northern Ireland that were there for their mid-term break. With fresh snow all day and only their third day on skis they spent plenty of time picking themselves up while laughing the whole time. Such quick learners we ended up touring most of the mountain by days end. “Now that’s Good Crack Fun!” one of them said…Good crack fun!

February Break week I was assigned to teach a sweet 4 yr old mildly autistic boy ~ just one of many New England Disabled Sports success stories! His parents are thrilled; he is beaming and we had a great week with spring temps skiing with the scouts in the Seasonal Ski School program. Loon is celebrating 50 years this year and the scouts were lucky to get to ride in the Golden Gondola, feed the birds and ski with Rocky the squirrel!

Seems to be positive posts have a snowball effect. Back in Maine I visited Julie Bernier at her new shop Earth Angel Arts in South Portland and now I have a Julie Bernier original piece of positive art plus the same day my missing snowman earring appeared from under my car seat.

Upcoming positive posts hopefully include the return of Old Man Winter before the end of March!

April will bring new growth and an Adventure Marketplace bus tour to New York City April 28-30th

See www.adventure-marketplace.com for more details on the NYC tour and other adventures and try giving the sunny side a shot – It is working for me!

Maine to DC: Nancy Goes to the Women’s March

Nancy Dorrans at the Women’s March in DC, January 21st.

While in Iceland last November, days after the election I heard the low rumbling across the ocean of a few women organizing a Women’s March in DC the day after the inauguration.  Through social media I learned that two of my friends had already purchased their airline tickets, and others were trying to figure out how to get there. That evening as I drifted off to sleep, the idea that I could help get people there from Portland struck like lightening and I sent a quick email through my iPhone (before it got doused by an Icelandic waterfall) to my contact at a local charter coach company to reserve a coach for that weekend.

I got an immediate response, “Can you CALL ME ASAP about this? We have so many requests. I would take you first… But need to chat with you. We have had a dozen requests just today so we are pretty limited.” Continue reading…

Nancy Organizes Trip to Women’s March in DC

“Let peace begin with me, let this be the moment now, with every breath I take let this be my solemn vow…”

-By Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller in 1955

This song (initially written for and sung by the International Children’s Choir of the Granger Dance Academy in Long Beach, California) has a catchy tune and stays in my mind whenever I hear or read “Peace on Earth” anywhere. I recall singing it first as a Girl Scout and at various church services over the years, especially around the holidays.

This New Year brings lots of promises of Peace on Earth and wishes for happiness, health and prosperity. I am hopeful that peace is possible. Where do you find peace?  Does it come from within or is it external? Do you want to be active and organized with others, using your voice and public spaces to be heard and to help create peace through action? Do you prefer a quiet place, somewhere serene to find and feel peace? Maybe you’re on an Adirondack chair on the dock overlooking the view from the lake at Camp, or you are at peace surrounded by the tranquil turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea?

Peace is a sign, a feeling and a cause. It is like the wind, you can feel it and hear it but you can’t see it. I’m a fan of peace and am looking within and reaching out in my role as a travel advisor and group coordinator to help “Peace Out” in 2017. Continue reading…

How To Embrace Warmth…

Last December, Portland experienced a long and record-shattering mild spell, which peaked during Christmas week.

According to weather.com we were not alone, “Almost 12,000 daily warm records were tied or broken during the month. Hundreds of cities from the Plains to the East Coast shattered their warmest December on record.”

It is unlikely we can count on another record breaking mild Christmas week like last year. And so I ponder, what will you do to stay warm during the holiday season and beyond? Will you travel south to the sunshine state or a tropical beach somewhere? Will you don your layers and head out on the trail, be it skiing, riding or hiking. Or do you hunker down under your fleece blanket with a good book? Although it seems counter intuitive, traveling north to stay warm is what I recommend. Continue reading…

Why Travel Advisor

A good travel adviser will un-clutter the vast universe of choices. People love the process of planning a trip, pouring through books, searching online sites, watching the travel channel, talking with friends and family. The research and dreaming is part of the fun right? Having an expert available to consult and work with on the decision-making and planning details is key.

West End News - Travel Adviser - Galapagos hike

Adventure Marketplace trip to Isabela Island, Galapagos, May 2014.

Continue reading…

Nancy did a fantastic job with all the arrangements for our chorus trip to NYC, from lodging to transportation to arranging our tours.Thanks for helping make our trip to sing at Carnegie Hall an even more memorable experience!

 

- Cathy Conroy

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