One of the most fascinating excursions that Dan and I have taken while visiting the Caribbean is a tour of a Chocolate Farm in Limon, Costa Rica.
The bus ride was a bit long, but our guide was great at sharing information about her country and she was obviously very proud of their accomplishments. Limon is not much unlike many of the poor cities in the Caribbean – so it was heartwarming hearing our guide speak so lovingly of her home.
Dan and I with Travel Quest Founders, Bonnie & Walt Lee
Dan and I just attended our host agency’s annual conference in Orlando. If you’ve ever attended a training conference, you know the feeling when it’s all over: brain overload! You’ve just spent days with other like-minded people, networking, sharing experiences, learning new concepts and I mean WOW! Where do you begin? There’s kind of a “high” that goes along with learning something new. But how do you put things into perspective? How do you create a reasonable and achievable Action Plan? How do you make sure that you don’t just toss everything you learned into a “one day I’ll go through my notes” pile?
It IS overwhelming and, unfortunately, we don’t always have the luxury of being able to take a few days off to skim through our notes, decide priorities, or create action plans and tasking lists. We have to fit all of that into that nasty schedule that has been waiting for us to return from our time away.
That’s where I am today – trying to steal a minute or two from my schedule to decide which great and amazing concept I picked up this weekend I’ll begin with. And my head is about to explode!
So … here are a few new things we’ll be bringing to the table over the next few months.
Cruise River to Normandy Beach: We’re work with a remarkable River Cruise Line, planning a group cruise for veterans and their families for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. We’ll be cruising down the Seine River with a stop in Honfleur to walk the historic Normandy beaches, the site of the D-Day landings. (By the way, if you’re part of a veterans’ group that would like to explore a specific location, let us know! We’d love to help design your perfect adventure!)
Visit to the Holy Land: Here is your chance to experience scripture instead of only reading it! As we visit Cana, Nazareth, Jericho, the Mount of Olives, Jerusalem, and Bethlehem, we’ll follow the path of Jesus, follow in his steps on Via Dolorosa (the “Way of the Cross”), sail across the Sea of Galilee, and visit the cave of our Lord’s birthplace, and so much more! (We also have amazing faith-based cruises and retreat opportunities that we’d love to share with you!)
We all remember the silly “Duck, duck, goose!” game we played as children. There’s a new game in town (or at sea!) and it’s become a huge craze!
If you’ve ever been on a cruise, you’ve certainly experienced the fun of finding a cute towel animal waiting for you on your bed when you return to your cabin each evening. If you’ve cruised within the past year or two, may have seen something a little strange OUTSIDE your cabin, sometimes in the strangest places: little yellow duckies hidden throughout the ship. And if you did, you might be wondering “what in the world?”, right?
The evasion of the Cruise Ducks is real … no one is really sure how it started or when. I mean, seriously, who ever thought that hiding a small yellow duck on a cruise ship would start such a frenzy! But now this craze is wildly popular and it’s considered a big deal when you or your child finds one! (Just for fun, do a search on Facebook for Cruising Ducks, which has over 25,000 members. The page is also a great resource, especially for those looking for templates for the “Passports” many use to tag their ducks.)
So, what’s this Cruise Duck craze all about? Here are some tips on where you can buy them, how to hide them, and how to find them – just in case you want to join the fun!
The idea behind Cruise Ducks is pretty easy: people buy ducks, then hide them around the ship in hopes that others will find them. Often, the ducks will have a cute little note or “passport” attached, asking that their benefactor be contacted when found and that a picture be posted on a specific Facebook group (yes, they track the whereabouts of their ducks!). In almost all cases, the ducks will be tagged with the name of the ship and the date of the sailing, making them great souvenirs!
Although some very creative people make cute little ducks (I’ve seen some adorable crochet ducks!), most of us buy them. They are easy to find and inexpensive. (Try your Dollar Store’s infant isle, Amazon or Oriental Trading Company). You’ll be amazed at the variety of styles available!
There aren’t any real “official” rules about hiding the ducks, here are a few guidelines:
* Avoid places where a gust of wind might send the duck flying into the ocean.
* Given how many children enjoy searching for the critters, avoid using obscenities on the attached notes.