I will never forget: Khalima at Thorny Bush Lodge who refused to pull my fifty pound suitcase; it was easier for her to carry it on her head . . . the geologist from the University of Kuwait who taught me to read the rocks that line the banks of the Nile as we sailed from Ashwan to Luxor; they revealed many secrets of life in ancient times . . . the shaman on the beach in Tulum who cleansed my aura and reinforced my ability “not to give up”. . . the shaman in Peru who ran a live guinea pig up and down Lawrence’s body in an eerie purifying ritual . . . or the Zulu chief who promised me 21 cows if I became his bride.

And I often reflect on the gratitude on Glory’s face when I gave her my robin’s egg blue patent leather shoes, my last day in the bush . . . how I felt when the rain washed away my footprints as I descended Machu Pichu . . . the lion in the dried up river bed whose amber eyes pierced my soul . . . the spa director at the Ritz Carlton in Sharm El Sheik who told me “my sun is happy to see you” , , , Arab women on treadmills with their heads and bodies veiled in black . . . and the camel driver who jumped on my camel and took off into the blackness of the desert, whispering in my ear in his thick accent “I like you; I teach you to ride camel, but do not tell anybody”.

For me, getting to any destination begins on an airline that pampers its passengers 37,000 feet high in the sky. The first thing I do when I board is make friends with the crew; they hold the key to my onboard happiness, as does a flat bed, down comforter and a crystal goblet filled with vintage wine.  Airline reviews

I also keep a diary of airport first class lounges with luxury amenities; they come in handy on long layovers. For instance, in route to (Malta), via London, the Virgin Atlantic Spa in Heathrow was a tranquil haven for a facial and hair cut. On a stop over in Hong Kong, a relaxing soak in a tub in Cathay Pacific’s first class lounge prepared me for the long haul home. Yes, business and first class travel does have its perks, but not all (airline flights) live up to expectations.


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