A Message from Shellie
Of all the books in the world, the best stories are found between the pages of a passport.
How many of you like to look through your passport? I do! It tells the story of all the places I have been. Each stamp holds different memories. One of my new favorite stamps is from my recent trip to Italy. I traveled with a group of colleagues from around the country to the Northwest region of the beautiful country, including a stop in Florence. I have always wanted to go to Italy, probably due to one of my favorite movies, “Under the Tuscan Sun.”
The day we arrived, we went up to the terrace of the hotel and the view took my breath away. I instantly fell in love. I could have left right there and been completely satisfied. It was everything I had imagined. I have been in a lot of different countries, but this one was special. As we traveled through the Cinque Terre area and the Chianti and Tuscany regions, the scenery never disappointed. The Cypress trees and poppies were exactly as I had seen in photographs. In addition to the scenery, the food and wine was amazing. I have never tasted fresher tomatoes, and the bruschetta was the best I had ever had. In one hotel, I slept with the window cracked to hear the sound of the locals speaking Italian late into the night. I savored every moment I spent in that country.
That experience is what I hope for each of my travelers. I want them to be transformed by their surroundings, the food they eat, and the people they meet. I want them to remember how they felt while they were there. I want them to remember how the food tasted. I want them to build memories that will take them back instantly to that place in time. We all travel for various reasons, but escaping our everyday lives has to be on the top of the list.
In 2017, I have chosen an array of trips that will hopefully help you escape — trips that will transport you to another time and another way of life. We all have different bucket lists, but hopefully we have a trip that you can cross off your list.
Shellie Andersen ’88, Director of Alumni Travel
Iowa State University Alumni Association
How to keep your passport safe while you travel:
HAVE TWO (OR THREE) COPIES
Before you even head out on your trip, you should make multiple copies of your passport. Copy the page that has your photo and full name on it, and keep these copies in separate places – at the bottom of your bag in different pieces of luggage, or even with different people who may be traveling with you. Leave one copy of your passport at home or with coworkers if on a work trip. (Also: Don’t forget, when traveling your passport must not have an expiration date that is less than six months from your departure date.)
When traveling, keeping your passport concealed is almost a no-brainer, but of course that doesn’t mean just carrying it in your pocket and hoping it stays out of sight. Instead, look for a flat money belt, which can be worn around your waist and neck and concealed under your clothing. If you’re looking for something a bit more comfortable, try a travel wallet or passport cover. Both conceal your passport (and nationality), while the travel wallet also has room for other valuable, including credit cards and emergency cash. (Note: Avoid carrying your passport and spending money together if you can, as taking out cash will alert potential thieves.)
LOCK IT UP
Most hotel rooms now have room safes. It’s a good habit to start to store your passport in your safe.
When most people think of passport safety, they think of safeguarding it from theft. Weather, however, is another consideration. To prevent water damage, travel with a waterproof cover.