I hope this finds you safe and healthy wherever you are!
Sorry for the long radio silence – we took a self-imposed summer break in July, partly because we didn’t have much new to report in the current world of travel. At least not in the world as we once knew it. We are in an ongoing transformational process, and it takes a little bit of time for each of us, depending on where we are on our path, to integrate what is actually happening, on the global, community and individual levels. It takes a bit of time to come to a realization that we are actually all deeply connected. It is a more a ‘felt sense’, than something we can see with our eyes. What am I talking about?
Well, from the chair of a CEO of a purpose travel company, I reflect a lot on what it may mean to those of us who love to leave the comfort of our homes, to take on the outer adventures in far away lands. I contemplate what may happen before the time we can’t physically go very far. I feel my way into what else we could do as a travel company during this strange time. What is our way forward?
For many of us, as the “outer world” is crumbling before our eyes, there is a beckoning to find something within, to find a deep resonance to what matters most. The stark news here at home and with our friends in other countries paints a broad canvas of a world that is shifting away from many old paradigms that we may never ever want to return to. Just look at the picture above (gratitude to Brenna Quinlan for sharing her artwork with us!). Anybody keen on going backwards? No thank you.
And in some ways, it seems very simple. It’s as sure as the tide coming in and going out with the turning of the face of the Earth to the moon. This mass tide for humanity has been rolling in for a while. As it’s slowly turning, it’s like a lip of water sweeping across the shore, like the soft clouds covering the blistering sun. Like cross-cultural differences, it’s all a matter of how we see it, how we take it, how it impacts us. It’s a matter of perspective. So in that sense, we are all traveling at all times, just by sitting still.
Practically speaking, I can tell you that we still can’t travel anywhere other than relatively close to home. We are not quite sure when we will be able to move ahead to something a little different. But losing sleep over it would defeat the very purpose of what we are trying to do. Ultimately, our journeys always have had a somewhat subjective agenda of showing our travelers a different way of being in the world. This time, it seems to be showing us how to be different with what we may have thought we knew best – ourselves! Now hasn’t that been a thrill ride like no other? 🙂
The thing I have enjoyed the most over the past six months, is spending more time in nature. On my walks in the Grand Forest and on the beaches here on Bainbridge Island where I live, I have reflected on the many beautiful places we visit in nature on our journeys. As we plan for itineraries looking ahead beyond this current perceived reality, fresh air, nature and the outdoors are calling us closer. We are looking into pilgrimages and long walks and hikes (US versions of Santiago de Compostela or Machu Picchu), as well as small group events in beautiful retreat centers from Maui to Maine.
Cross Cultural Journeys is also in talks with a few local entities about creating a couple of 5-day experiences to visit the Pacific Northwest, one in the spring, and one in the fall of 2021.
We are also contemplating partnering with healers and journey leaders with experience in facilitating small group processes for deep contemplation and healing, with ourselves, with those whom we travel, with those we visit, and with the land itself.
Eventually, we will land in the crystalline caves and hike the lush hills of Viñales Valley, as well as spend a lot more time on Cuba’s pristine beaches. In Guatemala, we will frolic in the splendid outdoors around Lake Atitlán and hike around the ruins of Tikal. Our Morocco journeys will take us back to open air markets, on camelback to the desert dunes of the Northwestern Sahara. And one day will travel back to Scotland’s green heaths. Regardless of destination, we will look to open plazas and sidewalk cafes and restaurants for our shared meals. Last but not least, and probably most importantly, we will continue to support various projects in the local communities we visit with donations through Cross Cultural Journeys Foundation.
As we revealed in our last newsletter, for your personal safety, maybe you choose to travel in family pods and groups of friends; your book club or your men’s group, or a small group of colleagues.
You can of course also choose a location and dates and call us when you are ready. We will be very happy to customize a safe and clean travel experience for you.
We very much appreciate your continued support, and hope to see you on a future outer and inner adventure with Cross Cultural Journeys!
Stay strong and healthy! And please stay tuned.
Cross Cultural Journeys