Have you been giving some thought to meeting my vacation challenge? I hope so, because I know from personal experience how much satisfaction you’ll get from vacationing someplace where your money will really make a difference. And I’m really looking forward to seeing some gorgeous photos from those who’ve taken me up on my challenge to join the force for good by taking a vacation in an area devastated by a natural disaster.
I’ve shared with you that what I’ve seen while helping with recovery efforts in the British Virgin Islands has made me more determined than ever to become as successful as possible, so that I’ll have the resources to create opportunities for others.
I took a visit to Napa Valley right after the fires. Yes, I knew I would benefit from a little R&R, but I was also intrigued by the idea of seeing how the Napa Valley region is coping in the aftermath of the fires that burned out of control for so long. From what I saw on television, it looked like there wasn’t much left after the fires swept through and devoured everything in their path. I wanted to go on the trip because I’ve never intentionally gone on a vacation for good, though I’ve been urging others to do so. I wondered if I’d see the same indomitable spirit at work that I’d witnessed in the BVI.
The answer is a resounding yes! Like the residents of the BVI, people in the Napa Valley rely on tourism for their livelihood, and many of them are wondering how long they can hold out with so many vacationers deliberately avoiding the area. In fact, the locals we met were delighted to see us. A few hugged us and thanked us for visiting there when so many are staying away. I learned that sales were down by 70% in what should have been the most lucrative month of the year for the vineyards and wineries, because that’s when they get most of the wine club signups that carry them through the rest of the year.
One of the things I did on my mini-vacation in Napa was schedule a massage, and I’m glad I did because of what my massage therapist told me. She said that I was her first client since the fires swept through nearly three weeks earlier. As a single mom, she was getting very worried about how she would manage to provide for her family if the tourists don’t come back soon. It was heartening to know that by spending my money on a massage, I was helping out somebody who really needs the income.
Much of the Napa Valley is still beautiful. Yet many areas that were untouched by fire are being avoided by tourists because the news coverage has focused on the countless acres scorched by fire and the homes and lives that were lost. The hotels and B&Bs and wineries left standing desperately need our business and could become collateral damage unless tourists start coming back, and soon. Your vacation dollars can help keep that from happening.
So don’t hesitate to schedule a vacation in a location that’s suffered the worst of nature’s uncontrollable force. And take your whole family. I think one of the most important lessons parents can teach their children is that money can be an expansion tool. Whatever it touches grows. It’s like an energy transfer, because when your money goes to do good in the world, the good always comes back to you in some way. If you’re spending so much of your life earning money to provide for your family, why not give your kids something that really matters—the desire to join a force for good.
Remember, my challenge is still open. Send us the photos from your vacation to share on this site.
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