Jul 08, 2014 Leslie Jerden
It’s always interesting to be asked to tell people a little about yourself, isn’t it? I’ll give it an honest try without telling you I like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.
Obviously, I really do love travel. It’s the ultimate humble maker, if you will. There have been a million moments during my travels that I have felt like such a tiny piece of this magnificent world we all inhabit. I am amazed over and over again by beautiful places and people. No matter what’s going on in the world, when you get out in it, nothing is clearer than we all want the same things. There is so much that is good. People are kind, cultures are intriguing, and friends can be easily made. That is the truth of it. I have pushed my comfort zone (destination-wise) many times in planning travel. Visits to countries that came as a majority request from my traveling group, rather than a destination I would have planned and offered. I’m so glad I ignored my own hesitation and let my group guide me! Those destinations make up some of my very best memories.
We offer some unique experiences on tour. I personally love the culinary specialties. When there’s a hands-on cooking lesson or a home-cooked meal hosted in a family home, I’m always excited. I enjoy cooking and relate preparing and sharing meals as a form of showing love to family and friends. It’s always good at the table.
I love art, so I take my time in the museums, particularly checking out the oil paintings. I’m crazy about being outdoors. Soft adventure-style hiking, anything on the water, small planes, hot air balloons, zip lines…you get the point. If you need a buddy for something like this make sure and come see me! I’m a good sport and will try most anything at least once.
I think I have a fairly decent personality. I know I love to laugh. When I’m really tickled, I do the laugh with head back, mouth open, and gums flapping in the wind. I am not ashamed either. I don’t take myself too seriously and am not afraid to be a tourist, a nerd, or a little silly. It’s the experience that’s important to me. Enjoying each day without worry if my hair is messy from the wind blowing through it, whether I laughed too loud, or looked too indulgent eating that piece of cake. Truth be told, it wasn’t the cake that made me look overindulgent. It was the French fries off the food truck that were slathered with garlic sauce, aioli, hummus, and tzatziki sauce. Probably the multiple cups of gourmet coffee from the local coffee houses aided as well. Yes, that is more accurate. I say when the opportunity is there, do it!! I’m blessed to have those choices. What makes my experience even richer is the opportunity to see my fellow travelers on tour do the same. It’s freely enjoying life. We all look good doing that.
Lastly, I know that I am a nurturer. It’s one of the first descriptors my family and friends use about me. I’m hopeful this isn’t like Helicopter Mom or annoying Over the Shoulder Hoverer. Instead I strive to be available when needed. I enjoy taking care of others’ needs, making them comfortable and catering to their expectations. It comes naturally for me at home and at work. I have been told at times that I’m trying to do too much and I need to hold back a bit. I’m not very good at that. I’ll admit I can occasionally burn myself out. I understand there has to be balance and I equally understand my passion for people gets in the way sometimes. Some folks are just givers. It makes me happy, so I own it.
I am busy in wonderful ways. I am always working on the next thing. There are so many ideas and tours that come to table but don’t get served, so to speak. Sometimes things just don’t work out. Weeding through it all takes a lot of time. We have many club members. I try to keep up communication and answer all questions and needs. New vendors, contracts, proposals, tour options, destinations, marketing and social media, make for a full schedule. Did I mention I’m married with three children? They’re pretty fantastic. I love them dearly. When I’m not traveling I am involved in whatever they’re into. I enjoy being active in the community I live in, too! I enjoy living and having my work office in downtown Bartlesville. I serve on some local boards and also edit a newspaper. I love it all! It’s a hectic, fast paced, full of life and love kind of life. It’s good.
I hope you’ll join me on a tour soon! I can tell you first hand that you are in for travel that spoils you in its luxury of ease. I truly enjoy traveling with our club. We have so many good people going with us. I look forward to knowing you and connecting you to this fantastic group!
Yours in Travel,