Welcome to the last issue of Women on the Road NEWS - as you know it! Next month we're dressing up and becoming sharper, more frequent and more visual. At last - photos in the newsletter!
Don't worry though. I'll be emailing you all a week or so before the changeover because remember - you'll have to subscribe again if you want keep receiving my newsletter in your mailbox. Technology and privacy issues don't allow me to simply migrate the mailing list - you have to confirm you still want it! So please watch for it, coming soon.
And now, the leaves are falling, the days are getting shorter, and the pumpkin spiced latte is back. It can mean only one thing - fall is here! Around the world, people in the northern hemisphere will be celebrating the changing of seasons with a variety of festivals and events. From the world famous Oktoberfest to the lesser known Thimpu Tsechu festival, here is a collection of places where you can join in the autumn fun!
This issue was written by guest editor Kaleena Quarles, who has been with us for many months and whose help and support have been invaluable. Kaleena also wrote the book review and Cause of the Month. Thank you Kaleena!
If you think it's too late, if you're holding back because you have no one to travel with, if there are a million reasons why you're alone or too inexperienced or too scared…
Then you really NEED Women on the Road: the essential guide for baby boomer travel! This book is made for you.
Whatever is holding you back, Women on the Road eliminates the obstacles, relieves your fears and insecurities, and gets you out of the house and onto the road!
Thimphu Tsechu is the biggest festival in the capital of Bhutan. Celebrated annually in the autumn season for a period of 3-4 days, this festival is a ceremony of colorful dances performed by trained monks and laymen in intricate costumes and masks. A Tsechu is a Buddhist festival in honor of Guru Rimpoche, the saint who brought Buddhism to Bhutan.
Perhaps one of the most unique festivals in existence is Concurs de Castells, the Tarragona Human Tower Competition. Hundreds of men, women, and children come together in teams to build the most impressive tower, sometimes up to 10 levels high and often with a child on top. The event has been declared part of the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. Check out incredible photos of the event here.
USA West Coast
Grapes are ripe for the picking in fall, which means they’ll need to be pressed into juice to produce wine! Around the country wineries host grape stomping festivals to celebrate the process of creating this delicious beverage, but the largest collection of stomps is found in California wine country. Check out this list of all 2013 California grape stomping!
The East Coast
New England is renowned for its Fall Foliage and draws tourists from around the world to witness the beautiful array of colorful leaves. Up and down the East Coast, cities host fall foliage festivals to celebrate the arrival of autumn. Some of the best-known are in Bedford, PA; Waterville Valley, NH; Northeast Kingdom, VT; Winchester, CT; and let's not forget Eastern Canada and the fall foliage events in Quebec City... and New Brunswick.
The original and largest Oktoberfest is held in Germany, and originated in 1810 as a horse race held to celebrate Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig’s wedding. The party was so successful it became an annual autumn event that now focuses on the beer. Even if you can’t make it to Germany, the popular festival is sure to be hosted on a smaller scale in a town near you.
The name "Harvest Festival" might be a bit misleading for those expecting your typical community festival with face painting and cotton candy. Ontario’s Harvest Festival is an electronic music and arts festival akin to Nevada’s Burning Man, featuring enormous art installations, circus performers, a noteworthy DJ lineup, and - to top things off - it’s hosted at a castle.
Each autumn this region in southeastern France celebrates the sweet chestnut in a festival called Castagnades d'Automne. Everything centers around the chestnut of course but also the chestnut tree and its many uses. From music to markets to chefs, everything you ever wanted to know about the chestnut but never thought to ask.
Lonely Planet has a great list of October festivals - check it out.
We can’t forget our Southern Hemisphere friends - even if the seasons are the opposite, and even autumn comes in March-May. Australia, New Zealand and South Africa have some fantastic fall festivals as well!
The Bright Autumn Festival is a ten-day celebration of the wonderful autumn colours and autumn produce of the valleys of Victoria's Alpine High Country. It takes place at the end of April, running through to early May. The highlight is the Gala Weekend with a market, music in the streets and a parade.
Arrowtown, New Zealand
Arrowtown’s autumn festival in April features activities like a scarecrow competition, vintage car display, an art exhibition, a parade, street theater, and live music.
Lambert's Bay, South Africa
Kreef is Afrikaans for crayfish and is both a festival and a feast. It is held every March in the West Coast town of Lambert's Bay, where you'll feast on fresh crayfish and get festive at rock concerts by some of South Africa's favourite musicians. There's also bungee jumping, aerial displays, a half-marathon, beer tents and more.
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Women on the Road Recommends
Love With a Chance of Drowning
by Torre deRoche
This is the true story of Torre DeRoche, a girl who found herself swept away in love - quite literally. After falling for a handsome Argentinean whose only dream was to sail the world, she faces her morbid fear of the ocean and jumps aboard a modest sailboat to embark on the adventure of a lifetime.
Both harrowing and heartwarming, the story tells the often hilarious tale of how DeRoche and her boyfriend survive storms, injuries, and the inevitable relationship woes that come from living on a tiny boat with no escape from each other.
Brimming with beautiful imagery of tropical paradises and the author’s insightful self-reflection while she deals with her fears and insecurities, this book will leave you wishing for another page to turn. Rumor has it a movie based on the book will be coming out soon, too! (Buy the book here)
›› Kaleena Quarles
How to Become a Housesitter and See the World
by Pete and Dalene Heck
Fellow bloggers Pete and Dalene Heck have put together the ultimate housesitting resource, the one that will show you how to get the best housesits, what to look out for, and show you how to see the world and save tons of money, just like they did.
Pete and Dalene are the experts because they've been paying their way on the road by housesitting for years and by their own estimate they've saved at least $30,000 in accommodation as a result!
Now, they're sharing everything they know with you. So if you've ever wanted to travel and live in the lap of luxury while you do it, you have to read this. (Buy the book here)
›› Leyla Giray
Preparing a new ezine - the design, deciding what goes in, what stays out, and all of those 'little' things means I've been neglectful!
I just posted an article on the Belle Epoque in the wonderful resort of Evian, on Lake Geneva. I visited recently and was reminded that the town still held all its old world charm - and I love anything from the Art Nouveau and Art Deco periods.
Speaking of nostalgia, I also explored Albania in search of Communist memorabilia - find out whether I was successful!
You know how much I love wildlife, right? So it was a pleasure to write about Sabah's newest conservation effort, the Sun Bear Conservation Center, for Green Global Travel, a top environmental blog.
I still have plenty of Malaysia stories up my sleeve so I'll be sharing those soon, as well as even more stories about my own region, the Rhone-Alpes. This promises to be a busy next few months!
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If You're Visual
Save the Elephants
African elephants are being slaughtered at an unprecedented rate as demand for ivory continues unabated. Although killing elephants is illegal around the world and a ban has been placed on ivory trade, the black market is thriving and poachers are still actively decimating the elephant population in Africa. If steps are not taken to bring an end to the heartbreaking murders of these gentle and intelligent creatures, elephants will become extinct.
Here's how you can help:
- Educate yourself on the issue. Read up on elephant threats and conservation. A recent article in Vanity Fair, Agony and Ivory, provides a comprehensive overview of the endangered status of elephants.
- Find out what environmental groups like WWF are doing to save the elephants of Central Africa, those under most recent threat.
- Join the International March for Elephants on 4 October 2013. Organized by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust through their iWorry campaign , the march will take place in 15 cities across the globe and is the first global march for another species in history.
- Consider making a donation to the following organizations working to end elephant poaching:
A brand new Women on the Road NEWS - hope you like it!!
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