Fan Mail & A Few Reflections

November 11, 2018

Decades ago I bought a set of coasters picturing old travel posters. 

I never thought I’d ever get to Luxor... 

 

 

Friends have suggested that I sell ads on my blog ‘to pay for your next trip.’ 

 

Others send me notices about ‘How to become a travel writer.’

 

Still others tell me I should publish all of this in a book.

 

Thank you, everyone, for your enthusiastic support and your ideas for how I might become a bestselling, multi-millionaire authoress and go spinning around the world for the rest of my life — for free. My reply? It’s all

 

Too. Much. Work.

 

I spent most of my career in communications and marketing, some of that time as a promotion manager in the book publishing business. So I know. It’s

 

Too. Much. Work.

 

When I started this adventure — the actual trip + the blog — I invited my nearest and dearest friends and colleagues to come on board if they were so inclined. When I embarked, I had around 120 ‘subscribers.’ By the time I finished, I had about 150 because other people found out about it. Some through Viking and most through the website Cruisecritic.com.

 

Here’s proof: The CruiseCritic.com ‘message board’ for passengers on the upcoming January 3 Viking Sun World Cruise produced the following exchange, on or around September 22-23:

 

Somebody I didn't know posted this:

‘I have a dear friend who loves what she has heard about Viking Ocean cruises but wonders if she would fit in as a single woman. She would probably be traveling alone. What is the situation for single folks on Viking? Are there any? Or would she just be surrounded by couples?’

 

A Cruisecritic responder posted this:

‘There's a single woman on the World Cruise right now and she’s having a ball...I've been following her blog. It's her first cruise, too!!’

 

I posted this:

‘Gee.... that sounds like me! And I'm going on the next one, too! Susan, aka Passepartout....’

 

Responder posted this:

‘DivaFeather (Susan aka Passepartout), Will you be bringing your ukulele along with you again?:D We became fans of yours shortly after you started posting on your last world cruise. It is incredible that for your first cruise you chose a solo world cruise. Your blog was fascinating and certainly conveyed your joy and enthusiasm with your decision to sail on Viking's initial world cruise experience. We look forward to ”Passepartout‘s” continuing posts about your adventures. You do have a way with words and are a great story teller. We will be taking a cruise on the Viking Sun (British Isles Explorer) next May. It will be the first cruise for that ship after the upcoming world cruise. We are hoping that she isn't too worn out from her second circumnavigation in 18 months. 😉 Best wishes for another great cruise.’

 

I posted this:

‘Thanks, xxx and xxxx, for the ‘fan mail’ ! Sorry you won’t be on the next WC. Re: Will the ship be ship shape for you?: The afternoon before we disembarked in London, I asked a steward ‘How long does it take to turn the ship around for the next bunch of passengers?’ He replied, ‘They'll start coming on board at 2 tomorrow afternoon!’ Everyone on our cruise had to be off the ship by 8 a.m., but most of us had left HOURS earlier, like at 3, 4, or 5 a.m., in order to 1) shift 850 passengers off onto tenders to get to shore and 2) get us all to our homeward bound flights on time. So the housekeeping staff could start work as soon as a stateroom was vacated.... but they had only 8 or 9 hours to clean the ENTIRE ship! I'd love to see a time-lapse film of that!’

 

 

I’m delighted to say that a few of the people I didn’t know beforehand who found out about the blog are coming on the next World Cruise! I’m looking forward to meeting every one of them. After all, they’re my fan base!

 

[After the first 3-week leg of the first WC, we landed (I guess a ship doesn't land, does it?) in LA and the next batch of cruisers came on board. The Cruisecritic.com bunch of pre-corresponders had their own cocktail party on board, and a woman walked up to me and said enthusiastically: ‘I love your blog.’ Of course I loved her immediately. And we are still in touch and we are discussing future travels together. That’s the kind of bonds that are formed on cruises — at least, when the cruise lasts 5 months!]

 

Mark Zuckerberg notwithstanding, social media can be (though it isn't always) a wonderful thing.

 

 

 

TO   BE   CONTINUED  ! ! !

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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