Hobbies = writing travel guides and product reviews
Most beautiful port = Quebec Canada (photo at left)
City = Venice Italy
Cruise Line = Princess
Pet = Teddy Bear, she will always be a puppy
Writing Port Guides involves solving puzzles
a Chemical Engineer with a Masters in Business. I enjoy writing
and solving puzzles. Each new travel guide is a puzzle. I
don't use a template, rather I organize the guide to best describe
issues unique to that port area using an over-arching theme to unify the guide.
For example, "logistics"
dominant theme for the Venice guide. The issue is how to make travel
connection between a plane,
a ship, a taxi, a boat, a train, and a hotel. Travelers
need to be prepared
for visiting an island with 400 bridges and aware that dragging luggage
over small bridges to a hotel can be a problem because there are
no porters to carry your luggage.
you are aware of the issues, it's easy to make decisions for your
travel priorities. If you travel "light", with minimal luggage,
you will not have a problem with
luggage in Venice. And if your hotel in Venice is close to a
dock, your luggage handling problems may be minimal. But if your
wife travels with an
incredibly heavy suitcase, you may decide to stay in Mestre on the
mainland with taxi and bus service to your hotel and a train across the
street to take you to the Grand Canal in Venice.
Writing guides poses technical challenges with software, internet
search techniques, creating maps, etc. I spend
a lot of time learning new software and
techniques to make the guides more useful. You should
see significant improvement in the new guides compared with those I
wrote last year.
For 20+ years I
had international assignments with multi-national corporations.
extensive travel in Europe, trips to South America, and
Asia-Pacific. I worked in Europe and lived there. I think I
have been to, and stayed in, most of the major cities in Europe.
and I vacationed in Europe for 37 years. We cruised on small
ships in the Caribbean and chartered a 42 foot sailboat to explore the
islands. Our first
"real" cruises involved three transatlantic crossings on the QEII in
1987-8. When I retired, we
got serious about cruising.
Planning a cruise vacation can be a Herculean
Most travel websites focus on advertising and provide minimal information. Travel blogs limit user interaction to exchanging
pithy comments. The traditional approach to writing port guides is a
bit of history, a
few photos, and a page of "canned" travel information.
Good maps are hard to
And it's almost impossible to find a map showing
the exact location of the ship's dock relative to other locations.
I had to create my own maps and use street level photos for self-guided walking tours.
not find the travel information I wanted - - -
So I decided to write my own
port guides to plan my cruise
vacations and shared the guides with a few friends.
They encouraged me to write more
and make them broadly available.
The rest is history.