I have a fun time visualizing my future expeditions by checking out the intensely filtered, unique perspectives found on Flickr (click on the photo for the credit), so enjoy this interpretation of the dream locations on the itinerary.
Day One we fly into Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport and meet for the very first time. The marketing team will pick us up and escort us to the Hotel Palomar for a swanky couple evening's stays. Afterwards, a little downtown time is in the mix!
Day Two will be jam-packed with Head Office shenanigans. Company meetings. Equipment, itinerary, and assignment overviews. A memorable lunch out at Olive Garden, and dinner and drinks with the team once more. Man-o-man, what a day.
Day Three brings us back to STA Head Office to make some hilarious films, join the marketing meeting, and eat lunch with the big wigs at Senior Management. After all those great times, we head off to the airport to time travel across the International Date Line towards our first destination: FIJI!
Day One in Nadi (pronounced Nan-di) where we meet the group and leader then board a local bus for the rural Fijian village where we'll volunteer, all while using our free time to explore the countryside, which includes lush gardens and peaceful Hindu temples. Or, we may head to the markets to snap up a bargain and sample some Fijian fare. I'll have a Fiji water, please? Ha...right.
Days Two through Thirteen are all about Teaching and Building, two delightful pastimes abroad. We'll also play games withÂ kids, share meals and jokes with the project team and attempt to become valued members of the community. Learning about the Fijian culture and discovering the area, by getting out beyond the village, will surely be an unmatchable experience.
Day Fourteen takes us back to Nadi to board a plane for the next stop, the Australian Outback!
Day One and Two we land in Sydney and marvel at the coolness of the city. The next morning we're out to Alice Springs to get settled before the Connections tour.
Day Three takes us from Alice Spring south to Yulara, where we'll spend the afternoon exploring Uluru, a.k.a. Ayers Rock. We'll be sure to check out ancient caves touched with Aboriginal paintings and learn about the oldest culture in the world (wah wah woo wah!). A birdy says the sunsets at Uluru are amazing, so the cameras will be clickin'!
Day Four we move from Yulara to Kings Creek for equally breathtaking sunrise views of Kata-Tjuta (The Olgas) mountain range! I guess we get to next discover the 36 domes and learn about the unique plants and animals here. Then, off we head through red sand dune & desert oak country to Kings Creek Cattle Station!
Day Five we return to Alice Springs because this working cattle/camel station is the largest exporter of wild camels in Australia...hmm, what an interesting topic for a video. I'll try not to piddle from excitement as we prepare to hike the canyon rim to see sites like the Lost City, Garden of Eden, and North and South Walls.
Day One is a day for Delhi, when we will arrive in our hotel and get all situated and such.
Day Two we tour the city! Exploring Old Delhi will be all about visiting the stunning and historical Jama Mosque, the ornamental Red Fort and the Raj Ghat (a moving memorial to Mahatma Ghandi). Also there are plans to visit the new landmarks, stopping at India Gate, the Government buildings, and Qutub Minar victory tower. Who knows what else will go down on the town.
Days Three and Four take us a-wandering to Jaipur, the legendary "Pink City", which is blessed with a wealth of wonders. Here we'll see the pink, delicately honeycombed sandstone windows of the Palace of the Winds, the Observatory and the Maharaja's City Palace. A huge perk is also seeing the Amber Fort, out of which a visitor half expects seeing Indiana Jones swing.
Day Five we find ourselves in the middle of India, in rural Abhaneri, to see a step well and to enjoy some lower-key life.
Day Six is Fatephur Sikri, a magnificent 16th century Mughal city known for Jama Masjid. Then, we get comfy in Agra for the next glorious day.
Day Seven we pay homage to the Mughal forces of genius by visiting Agra and the awe-inspiring Taj Mahal - one of the man-made wonders of the world! There will also be time for a visit to Agra Fort, which is supposedly a site often overlooked but not to be missed.
Days Eight and Nine we will squeeze the last bits of joy out of Delhi-time and prepare for the heat and hilarity of DUBAI!
Days One through Four and we're chillin' out in Dubai, relaxing and enjoying ourselves and some well-earned free time before heading to the bush!
Day One and Two on the African continent will be spent getting settled in the bustling center of Nairobi, Kenya.
Day Three sends us off to Arusha to rest and relax before the "bush".
Day Four sends into the bush where we visit Lake Manyara, a fairly wooded game park with a soda lake in the middle. Tree-climbing lions are said to be found here!
Days Five through Seven we fly off to the middle of nowhere, via the archeological site of Olduvai Gorge, "The Cradle of Mankind," to visit the world famous Serengeti National Park, one of Africa's premier game parks. We'll surely enjoy the multitude of animal and bird life while cruising through the acacia-spotted savannah, keeping a look out for the "Big 5" once again and taking in the vastness of the Serengeti plains. This adventure will be accompanied by Elton John and his beautiful soundtrack additions to The Lion King.
Day Eight and Nine we journey to Ngorongoro Conservation Area and will truly experience the thrills of the crater floor as we take in our final safari experience viewing the high concentration of wildlife. This place is an animal utopia and a location out of a dream. After lunch, we break camp and continue to a hotel in Arusha, a vibrant and colorful town with bustling markets.
Day Ten Chris and Lindsay do Arusha. Asante-sana East Africa, and we are out! Next stop: South Africa!
Days One through Six we start in Cape Town doing all of the above: Long Street, Volunteering in townships, Hiking Table Mountain, and visiting Stellenbosch wine country.
Day Seven we dive with sharks...and then recover from the trauma in Hermanus.
Days Eight through Ten are all about adventure sports: bungy jumping and sky diving. Plettenberg Bay is home to many a crazy adrenaline junkies and some incredible beach.
Day Eleven marks the end of our garden route trip in Port Elizabeth.
Days One through Three are all about getting settled in Athens and enjoying the great shopping, sun, and glorious AC as we create videos from trips gone by.
Days Four and Five bring us to Paros with our group. We're tanning, swimming, beaching, reading, shopping, drinking, eating. You name it.
Days Six and Seven scare me. They mean I have to stay up all night partying, surrounded by expensive libations and pretty people. Alrighty, I'll give it a whirl.
Days Eight and Nine we bake by the pool and adore the sunsets of Santorini. Walking on volcanoes and riding donkey may or may not be on the agenda...more may than may not.
Days One and Two will be all about getting settled in Edinburgh, Scotland. I love these low key days. They are sure to be godsends. Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and has a lot to see and experience. Maybe we can walk the Royal Mile, picking up souvenirs from any of the great shops along the way. Oh, and I’m sure we’ll check out the castle and drink a pint or two!
Days Three through Five couldn’t be cooler with a visit to the Scottish Highlands for an adventure that’s sure to resemble a Bear Grylls episode! Eh, probably not. But we will see castles, mountains, lochs (lakes), and experience Scottish food and drink, like Haggis and whiskey. I plan on throwing Chris into Loch Ness and bait the legendary creature. He eats Cali meat, I’m sure.
Days One and Two of the last destination will be bittersweet, nostalgic, and Guinness-soaked as we live up Dublin, Ireland. Oh, sure, we’ll enjoy Dublin Castle and all the other good sites, too.
Days Three through Seven we will be immersed in a raucous adventure around the south and west coasts of this beautiful country. I’ll probably be tempted to cry the whole time, thoroughly emotional due to the end of the WTI experience, but man will we have a lot to look back and dream about forever. Yes this trip is sure to bring enlightenment and a sense of lifetime fulfillment. I'm on board.