Pair Travel Writing and Photography at a Yucatan Retreat

Every once in awhile I hear about a trip that makes me think, sure, I can go. That is until reality sets in. If this trip was just a week later, I could probably talk myself into swinging it. The dates don’t work for me, but perhaps they might for you.

From December 4-11, 2007, there is the Travel Writing Workshop in the Yucatan lead by a husband and wife team, Judith Fein and Paul Ross. She’s a travel journalist; he’s a photographer. Their company, Global Adventure is one I wish I was running. With what time, I have no idea, but they look like they have a rip roaring good time traversing the world and taking people along with them on journeys geared towards learning and self-improvement. Plus, they live in Santa Fe, New Mexico when they are not on the road. What could be finer than that? Sorry, Columbus. Sorry, Ohio.

Judith has written articles galore for many major publicatations and had been a frequent guest on NPR’s, now defunct, Savvy Traveler. Paul’s vita is also extensive. While Judith captures their travels in words, he snaps the photos. Being that they are experts–and they pass on their know-how, going on a trip with them sounds like a blast.

The one in the Yucatan centers on little known archeological sites and Mayan villages during the days. Nights are spent at Rancho Encantado, an eco-tourism type resort that includes candlelight dinners and massages. Here’s a link to comments about Judith’s and Paul’s trips from people who have taken them. Now that I’ve read about this trip myself, it sounds like my perfect dream vacation, and I didn’t even know I had one.

Jerusalem Syndrome: Holy Folks

Have you ever heard of the Jerusalem Syndrome? I hadn’t until yesterday when I was driving from one point to another and heard part of a radio interview with a woman about a book she has written. I can’t remember her name, or the name of the book-it was dark, I was in a hurry and didn’t have time to stop and write her name down, but here’s the scoop. I found it facinating.

Some people, not a lot, just some, go to Jerusalem on a vacation and end up thinking they are Jesus, or John the Baptist or the Virgin Mary. To be a true sufferer of the Jesus Syndrome you need to have had all your mental faculties in order before you forgot you were just little old you.

The syndrome, just in case you’re in Jerusalem and are getting a bit worried, or you are headed to the holy land, manifests this way.

  • First you start feeling anxious and nervous
  • You start visiting holy sights
  • Before you visit holy sights you purify yourself, an elaborate process that involves shaving one’s heard, bathing, and putting on white.

Now, this syndrome is not clear cut in terms of what experts think about it—or when this syndrome was first discovered. I’ve found various articles written about it. Here’s two for you to check out. One is at The Savvy Traveler and the other is an article from a professor in Israel. If you do happen to go to Jerusalem, keep your eyes open. The Jerusalem Syndrome isn’t common, but people do say it happens.