Ep 25: Travel photography w/ Marc Silber, Drunk swims across Hoover Dam, Hurricanes and more...

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Alex: Disneyworld is the most traveled to vacation resort in the world, and only two weeks ago, it shut down for the 6th time since first opening.

Ericka: As Hurricane Irma relief efforts are underway, what does this mean for communities damaged in its wake? Hi I’m Erick Cruz Guevarra.

Alex: And I’m Alex Cwalinski. You’re listening to Go the Travel Podcast.

Ericka: Also, the winter Olympics are set to start this coming February in South Korea.

Alex: But fears about a conflict with North Korea could be hurting ticket sales. And what are some easy ways to improve your travel photography?

Ericka: This week we’re joined by author and photographer Marc Silber, to discuss his new book.

Silber: There’s a few points that I’ve found have made a huge difference for me as a photographer.

Alex: We have a lot more stories coming up. Stay with us and we’ll fill you in on this week in travel.                                                                                             


Alex: This episode is sponsored by www.LocalBeyond.com Think outside the cubicle.

Ericka: Also, this is the final week of our Cocoon Innovations giveaway contest.

Alex: We’re giving away a backpack and a Grid-it organizer by Cocoon Innovations. To enter to win one, all your have to do is sign up for our mailing list at www.gothepodcast.com/subscribe

Alex: Winners will be announced September 21st.


Hurricane Irma

Alex: More than half of Antigua and Barbuda’s GDP is gained from the tourism. And many nearby islands in the Caribbean have similar stats.

Ericka: But after Hurricane Irma damaged much of the region, their economies could take a hit.

Nancy: Hurricane Irma was one of the most damaging hurricanes we’ve ever had. It was particularly damaging for the Caribbean. Hi, I’m Nancy Trejos, I’m a travel writer for USA Today.

Alex: Some people are saying the region could be facing billions of dollars in lost tourism business.

Nancy: Most of the money they make is from tourists like us, so it’s going to have a huge impact.

Ericka: But some nations like the Dominican Republic were spared.

Nancy: The damage varied from island to island. You have some islands like Jamaica which are fine then you have some islands like St. Maarten, which they’re pretty damaged.

Alex: Recovery efforts have begun, with the more important infrastructure elements getting repaired first.

Nancy: Some of the airports are opening up to regular traffic, but a lot of them are open to flights that are bringing emergency supplies.

Ericka: Cuba was another island hit by the Category 5 storm. Irma barreled through its northern shores, damaging over four thousand homes.

Alex: Now, how does a nation with limited internet and television access prepare for such a powerful storm?

Lori: Between 700 thousand and a million people were evacuated before hand.

Alex: Joining us to talk about Cuba is travel writer Lori Zaino.

Lori: Havana was flooded, with 32 foot waves and high winds damaging a lot of trees and such.

Ericka: Being the largest island in the Caribbean, Cuba is no stranger to storms.

Lori: Cuba has dealt with about 28 hurricanes and tropical storms in the last 100 years so they are very well prepared. About a week before the hurricane hit the Cuban military started informing people that a big hurricane was coming through.

Alex: Since internet isn’t as common in Cuba, especially outside Havana, the gov’t has to inform people about the hurricane a little differently. 

Lori: The way they kind of diffuse information is different than how they do it in the US. They actually go door to door. They explain to people that there is a large storm and they spread the information by word of mouth. And a lot of the information is also passed through neighbors by mouth almost like when you were a kid in school and they had a phone calling system where one family would call the other family.

Alex: Many areas in Cuba, including some parts of the capital, are still without running water or electricity.

Lori: I think that they’re going to be cleaning up for a really long time…

Ericka: The state department is advising Americans to avoid travel to Cuba until recovery efforts are complete. But Zaino doesn’t think the damage will stop some people from traveling there.

Lori: Places like Europe don’t really get the concept of a hurricane because they don’t get them. So someone from NY or Florida aren’t going to go to Cuba, but in Europe they still might.


Drunk Briton

Ericka: A British man, became the first person to survive a swim across the hoover dam.

Alex: 28-year-old Aaron Hughes was visiting Las Vegas for a bachelor party, when the group took a trip to see the famous landmark.

Ericka: In the one-hundred-degree heat, and after some heavy drinking, Hughes took the plunge.

Alex: Lucky for him, nine of the ten turbines that suck water from the dam to generate electricity were shut off.

Ericka: Hughes said he could feel the pull of the one turbine dragging him toward the wall. Had all turbines been on, he would have most likely died.

Alex: After a 45-minute swim, Hughes, who has a ‘no regrets’ tattoo, was met by police on the other side. He was fined three hundred and thirty dollars for trespassing.

2018 Winter Olympics Korea / Paris 2024

Alex: The 2018 Pyongchang Winter Olympics are five months away,

Ericka: But ticket sales are below average.

Alex: Could North Korea’s Nuclear Bomb testing be the problem? The site of the games is only 50 miles south of the world’s most guarded border. Japanese and Chinese tourists were expected to make up the bulk of international ticket sales. But tension in the region has prompted Japan to create a mass evacuation plan in case war breaks out. South Korean officials say that there shouldn’t be any cause for concern, considering the 1988 Seoul Olympics and 2002 World Cup in South Korea, turned out fine.

Alex: In other Olympics news, after three failed attempts over the course of twelve years, Paris, France will be hosting the Olympics.

Ericka: This week, the International Olympic Committee confirmed that the French capital will be hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics.

Travel Photography with Marc Silber

Ericka: Need help improving your Instagram photos?

Alex: Marc Silber, photographer and author of Advancing Your Photography, gives us some tips to improve your skills. Like shooting during the golden hours.

Silber: Which is when the light is softer and warmer. And that’s half and hour before sunset and half an hour before. Same thing with sunrise.

Alex: Perspective of the camera is also important when shooting.

Silber: If you take all your photographs from eye level they’re just not going to be that interesting because we’re already looking at things from eye level. So if you mix up the angles and you get up high or come from the side, you’re going to add a lot of interest to your photographs.

Alex: Silber says that social media sites are great resources for finding out what people are taking photos of in certain locations.

Silber: Really spend some time looking around. What have other people photographed, but not because you want to photograph those things, but you’ll get some idea of two things. One, what you want to avoid, because you don’t want to fall into the same cliché, but more likely you’ll get an idea of what the place looks like.

Alex: These are important when going to places with famous landmarks.

Silber: Like, I’m going to Paris, so of course I’m going to want to take a picture of the Eiffel tower. If I take the same postcard picture of the Eiffel tower, what’s the point? I come back with something that I might as well have googled it.

Alex: But what if you want to take photos of locals or people in their environment?

 Silber: The first thing they do is they stand very stiffly…

Alex: Silber’s new book is called Advancing Your Photography. You can find it on his site at Marc Silber dot com.

Tourists Perish in Italian Volcano

Ericka: Three tourists died in a Volcano near Naples Italy last week. All were members of the same Italian family.

Alex: Two parents tried unsuccessfully rescue their 11-year-old son near the Solfatara Crater. The boy crossed a fence into an off limits area when he sunk into the soft soil.

Ericka: Signs near the crater warn that steam from the ground can reach temperatures up to 320 degrees.

Alex: The boy’s parents also found themselves stuck and are believed to have died from the fumes.

Drunk Passengers

Alex: Almost every week you can find a new story online about drunk passengers on a plane, and this week isn’t any different.

Ericka: On Wednesday, chaos broke out when a drunk couple started arguing on a British Airways flight.

Alex: Attendants on the Los Angeles to Heathrow flight had to separate a husband and wife after they began shouting and screaming at each other.

Ericka: Passengers claim the duo had to be restrained in their seats.

Alex: Police were called to remove them from the plane after arriving, but the couple was let go.

Ericka: On a different flight this week, another drunk passenger was met by police after landing.

Alex: A disruptive 22 year old man was reportedly singing loudly with his headphones on during the entire flight. Passengers say he was uncooperative with the crew and refused to leave the plane.

Ericka: That’s when another passenger took matters into his own hands.

Alex: The unnamed passenger can be seen in a video posted on youtube and now on our website, putting the disruptive passenger in a chokehold and rendering him unconscious.


Highway 1 south of Big Sur

Ericka: Earlier this year a part of California’s highway 1 was damaged in a massive mudslide.

Alex: An area just south of big Sur experienced its largest mudslide ever, sending more than 5 million cubic yards of rock and dirt onto the highway.

Ericka: State officials said this week that the iconic highway won’t be open until the end of summer, 2018.

Alex: Repairs are expected to cost roughly 40 million dollars.


Alex: And that’s our Go the Podcast episode for this week. I’m Alex Cwalinski

Ericka: And I’m Ericka Cruz Guevarra. Subscribe to Go the Podcast wherever you’re getting your podcasts.

Alex: Leave us a review on Apple Podcasts.

Ericka: And don’t forget to subscribe to our mailing list to enter our giveaway contest.

Alex: Thanks for listening.