Would you like to hear the Denton theorem regarding a universal trait seemingly shared by every intrepid soul in the travel business? (By way of warning, unless you hit delete immediately, you are about to.) So, here it is. As much as we enjoy reminiscing about the past and reveling in the present, our secret passion is anticipating the future.
As Edward Streeter put it, “”Travel is ninety per cent anticipation and ten per cent recollection.” Sometimes this affliction is so acute that we actually catch ourselves in the midst of one glorious travel experience dreaming about the next. Admittedly, that is a little sad.
But here is another great travel insight (I am just full of them today, or as some would say, just full of it.). As much as we enjoy anticipating the next experience, for better or worse, it seldom turns out quite the way we expect. The brilliant Benjamin Disraeli once observed, “What we anticipate seldom occurs, what we least expected generally happens.” That, however, is precisely what makes travel so rewarding. If it were predictable, it wouldn’t be an adventure, don’t you see?.
So what has prompted all this philosophical musing on my part, you may (or may not) be asking yourself. As it happens, I am brimming over with keen anticipation as I stand on the precipice of another travel odyssey. Frankly, like so many of my travel exploits, I am indebted to one of my favorite travel partners, in this case Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines.
A couple of weeks back, RCCL announced a contest where travel professionals were invited to submit an essay of 100 words or less explaining why they were “Loyal to Royal”. I quickly realized that I can merely sneeze and expectorate at least 100 words, so I decided to enter.
To cut to the chase, five executives at RCCL headquarters were obviously feeling particularly magnanimous that day because miraculously, I was one of the five winners selected from over 500 entries!. Here is my entry.
Loyalty, like faith, is never sounder than its intended object. No amount of fanatical belief will support a heavy man standing on thin ice. I am “Loyal to Royal” in part because I have confidence in their consistent product, respect for their professional staff and agreement with their strategic vision. A much more important reason for my loyalty, however, is simply that across the span of twenty-eight years the foundation of my faith has never seen so much as a fissure. When one’s own commitment is consistently reciprocated and one’s trust proves entirely justified, loyalty comes very easily indeed!
The prize was a trip tp Papenburg, Germany to the Meyer Werft ship yard for a sneak peek at the soon to be launched Quantum of the Seas. The trip will be hosted by Vicki Freed, RCCL’s Senior Vice President Sales and Trade Support & Service and Joanne Schimelman, Vice President of National Accounts. I interviewed Vicki on this very blog a while back which you can read and listen to here.
As I pen these words, I am wending my way at 30,000 feet to Miami. Tomorrow around 1:00 pm we board a special Miami Air charter for Germany. I invite you to follow along over the next few days as I chronicle my journey and publicly post many pictures beyond even those on this blog.
In a sense we have come full circle. I venture forth not knowing who else will be participating, where we will be lodging or the seating configuration of our silver chariot. If you imagine that I find these little gaps in my knowledge disconcerting, you need to go back and reread the first two paragraphs. The mystery only augments the anticipation.
I learned long ago that it is not getting there that is half the fun. Thinking about being there . . . now that is half the fun!