Subject: Boston member
Hi all you world travelers ~

I can't even remember if I ever introduced myself - so I'll try to make this brief in an effort not to bore you.

I stumbled upon Travelzine while researching a France trip about 2 years ago.The Travelzine was a link on Jack's Site. It was the best travel present that I've ever had!!! I love sharing information and finding out tips from all of you from all over the globe. Like all of you, we adore travel, anytime and anywhere. We are barely home when we are thinking of where we will go next.

We live in a suburb on Boston - about 15 min by car -- and we've enjoyed living in close proximity to the mountains as well as the ocean while the kids were growing up. Newton is a suburban town that is very heterogeneous - It is also the home of the Fig Newton (wonderful fig cookies to those who don't know them), Children's Television Workshop (the founders of Sesame Street) and David Beshears of Mt Everest fame. That aside, it's really like any other suburb complete with it's good points as well as it's faults. Now that our children are grown, we have moved out... We have been all over the East and West Coasts in America as well as to most of the National Parks and the Sawtooth range in western Idaho. We have traveled in England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Italy, Greece and New Zealand. (Some of these countries we know quite well.)

As many of you know, our passion is walking in general and hiking in particular -- not the climbing with pitons stuff (we're both gray-haired and middle-aged), but the walking that gives one time to breathe, to drink in the air literally and figureatively and to have the chance to admire nature in all it's glory. It has also been personally a terrific way for my husband and I to talk as his hours are very long and we do not have the time together that most people do unless we travel! We have been to the Pyrenees (both sides) about 6 times and plan to return again in the fall. This is our favorite area so far. It is not only georgeous, but it has parts that are still in the 50's, with tiny villages and friendly, open, warm people. The landscape seems sometimes out of Hollywood - It will take your breath away - but it's the combination of this natural scenery plus the customs and the openess of the people that make us want to return again and again. Hopefully, if all goes well, we will return to the South Island of New Zealand at the end of February with one of our children. This, too, is a special place -- if you like space and natural beauty combined with friendly people.! We'll see. Anyway, we're hoping to go.

After the 9-11 tragedy, we, as everyone else had our own personal trials with travel again. There is no way any of us could be immune. However, we decided that travel we must, and we scooped up cheap flights to Paris for a marvelous hiaitus in December. This only reaffirmed our love of meeting new people, examining old haunts, and seeing new places! I was terrified to fly again (60 people on our flight) - but we made it and as they say... upwards and onwards!

My very best to all of you for a joyous, healthy and safe 2002. We hope that as many of you as can come will be at the GTG in June!!! Happy travels to one and all! Susie Newton, MA