On the Road, Again

My favorite seat, and favorite flight attendant waiting for me.

I am fatigue-fatigued.

Name it, I’m ready for something normal. Probably not the old normal, but a new sort of normal. A re-centering.

Having traveled (and lived) in Asia for 20 years, I have been used to mask wearing, crowds, bumping, lines, health screenings, temperature checks, and getting on with life. Some people begrudge it, some people deal with it, some are upset, and others don’t go. I can’t blame any of them for how they feel (not that I have any say-so in the matter). I just want to travel again.

So, as part of…


Really, my introduction into Sustainable Travel & Tourism (Part 1)

Sustainable Travel & Tourism Word Cloud © James Menge, 2021

We read a lot about Sustainable Travel these days. At least I have.

Due to the near-zero level of travel in the last nine months of 2020, the waters are clear once again in over traveled destinations, but conversely, many restaurants and retailers are out of business. Cruise ships are becoming banned from certain ports, but tour operators become less-employed. Where’s the balance?

I made my first trip with Tourism Cares in 2016 to Ellis Island and Liberty State Park in New Jersey for some tree planting, painting and clean…


The most famous person I sat next to…

Photo by Neil Martin on Unsplash

A part of travel is that unless we can afford otherwise, we travel next to people we do not normally know. We can be super wealthy and sit next to someone in poverty. We can be an unknown and sit next to someone famous. We can be a failure in school and sit by someone educationally brilliant. We can be weak and sit next to someone strong. We can be lost and sit next to someone found. On and on. We welcome them all.

Rumi, an 13th century poet wrote this (translated…


New York Times, March 28, 2020; A Year Without Travel

Nearly a year ago, the New York Times stopped publishing their print edition of the Travel section. I’ve been a subscriber in California and Texas for nearly 10 years, in large part, because of the Travel section. The writing is like being there and their relevancy is unparalleled.

So, today, they published a special section, A Year Without Travel. They outlined five key areas:

  • The staggering collapse of the travel industry, by the numbers (1 in 10 jobs; in the Maldives, 66% of their GDP; UNWTO $1.3T estimated loss).
  • Planning for the return of tourists in Hawaii (my son has…


How the travel industry is poised to be a key contributor in the recovery from the Covid pandemic

Photo ©Richard Gunion, dreamstime.com

Great article from The NY Times this morning on how the travel industry is stepping it up to make vaccines more readily available…

Before the article, may have some additional opportunities for
> more CVBs sponsoring with key suppliers
> using cruise ships for on/off shots (and maybe a quick tour of what a great job the cruise lines have gone through to make cruising safe!) …


How cohesive is your company, your department and your team? How much can they, and you, withstand?

In my first article on the Presents of Leadership, I focused on Presence and Authenticity. I chose those because of the current Covid-lockdown and work-from-home practices of many companies. Today, I want to look at another of Bob Iger’s principles for authentic leadership, Integrity. As a subset of integrity, I also include a piece on giving and taking credit.

In the Air Force, Aircraft Structural Maintenance specialists maintained the aircraft’s structural integrity and the crew’s safety who flew them. Aircraft structural integrity is…


Is your leadership type one that your team inspires to, looks forward to, grows from, builds their trust in… meet Jan, a gift.

I dedicate this first personal article on Presents of Leadership to Jan. Jan’s gift was allowing me to explore and actively grow an entrepreneurial side of my career. I will write more about Jan in my article on risk-taking (both her part and mine). Jan exhibited “airmanship” ~ an intricate insight of leadership and to her I am indebted. Thank you, Jan.

Presents of Leadership, Part 1: Leadership and Management

In the aftermath of the Boeing 737 Max tragedies, I read an excellent article in…


2020 let us know many of our limitations ~ work, family, kids, travel (for sure), proximity, news… here is a piece that says, “We’re OK.”

Wall Street Journal, January 9, 2021

Dan Cable, a professor of organizational behavior at London Business
School, believes motivation grows at work when people satisfy
their natural “seeking” instinct to learn, experience, experiment and
explore.
It also comes when we express ourselves creatively, take on
challenging tasks and find purpose and meaning in our work.

Here’s the problem: the pandemic has basically carpet-bombed all of
these things.

Be a realist: Everything ISN’T OK, but humans are reslient and we’ll come out…


2020 was bust, mostly. The New York Times published their 52 places to travel, albeit, a little differently ~ 52 Places to Love in 2021

If 2020 has done anything for people who love to travel, it has reminded them that the world is not a checklist of places to tick off — Venice, been there, the Serengeti, done that — bu something to explore, to savor and to love.

NY Times, January 10, 2021

2021 will bring its own uncertainties ~ Will the vaccine hold? Will enough people reach a level of immunity? Will borders reopen? How will travel industry workers find their jobs…

James Menge

Traveler, Writer, Executive

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