It’s not unusual for me to sit around dreaming about my next vacation. I’m a self-declared travel gypsy. I’ve visited so many wonderful countries, I sometimes lose count. I’ve taken breaks to live, study and work in Africa and Europe; and oh yeah…Eat, Pray and Love there too!
Today, I sit in my self-imposed quarantine dreaming about my next trip in this crazy different COVID world. I survey my list of dwindling places left that will still allow Americans with open arms; and then I quickly become depressed. So much of the world has closed their borders to us; and I guess with good reason. I asked my Facebook friends, if they were President or Prime Minister of a country, would they allow Americans in. Their answer was a unanimous “NO”. That’s coming from my American posse, and oh yeah, even my Canadian cousin!
Now that’s a pretty sad reality, when even our own people (fellow American’s) said “don’t let Americans in”! We have to put our heads together and somehow fix this, so we can proudly roam this planet again and be welcomed with open arms.
So, I try to do my part and encourage my friends and family to do the same. I sacrifice my southern hospitality, continue to try to stay at home, social distance, wear my mask, and I even added a few COVID-19 pounds (OK actually a horrible 8 extra pounds!). I remain upbeat and hopeful in knowing that one day the borders will open again. One day airplanes will be full again. Hotels will be bustling with families touting “sold out”; and cruise ships will sail at full capacity to destinations around the world. Is this dreaming, or is this wishful thinking of a time gone by?
So as our government leaders, the CDC, the WHO, medical professionals and pharmaceutical companies figure all this crazy COVID stuff out, I am going to keep on dreaming. I’m still planning my trips to more places on my bucket list. When we can safely travel with peace of mind again, I want to be ready.
There are so many countries that will need our support, our visits, and our tourism dollars to recover. There will be so many people who will be grateful and happy to see us again. Ray Charles sang “Georgia on my mind”. But I’m singing “I’ve got Cape Town, South Africa on my mind”.
For now, stay safe, and stay healthy…until we roam free again…Denella.
Denella Ri’chard’s Digital Bio / Profile
From creating online travel startups in the mid-90’s and owning her own travel agency, Denella Ri’chard is an award winning, industry expert and lifestyle influencer in the world of travel. A product of South Louisiana, self-professed travel gypsy, undercover artist, and wine aficionado, her mission is to “inspire people to travel and experience different cultures, appreciate our kinship, and bring
us one step closer to discovering the beauty of our shared humanity.”
As a busy consultant, TV host, media and corporate speaker, Denella has learned the art of balancing work with fun, while traveling throughout Africa, Europe and The Americas. She has held leadership positions with globally recognized hospitality and cruise line brands. Her passion is in sharing insights on travel, discovering what’s new, and getting the inside scoop from industry experts. Her next adventure is working on a new travel concept to create unique personalized, elevated vacation experiences.
“Traveling with Denella” airs weekly on the CJC Network.
Photography by Denella Ri’chard