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Diana's View: Letters (10/5/2001)

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This is The Savvy Traveler and I'm Diana Nyad.

American travelers are in a quandary right now. The State Department is issuing a blanket caution, that U.S. citizens abroad may be at increased risk of terrorist attacks. People are hesitating to go far from home. And yet there's a group of 800 tourists from Portland, Oregon, who have traveled to New York City this week-end just because Mayor Guiliani asked for support of theaters, hotels and restaurants. They call it the Flight for Freedom. And there are similar gestures around the country.

We got a phone call from a woman named Roseanne LeSage who cancelled a family trip she had planned and booked a trip to New York City instead, to help give some tourist dollar relief there.

Maybe you can empathize with us here at The Savvy Traveler. We're travelers. It's in our blood. At our staff meeting this week, half of us felt strongly that we are doing a service for our listeners to continue to follow the aftermath of the disasters inasmuch as it has deeply impacted travel. The other half pushed for getting back full-tilt to traveling the world. Put September 11 behind us.

And in our feedback on the show from you, we heard the same kind of split. One man, Doug Snyder, wrote from Miami, that he thought our last show touched on "the complex emotions every single American feels these days". But a woman from Minneapolis, Anita Skogland, e-mailed us this: "We want an escape, something funny or real or exotic about the rest of the world. Come on, get on with it!"

We're working our way back to doing what we do best and love most. That's traveling. But the travel world has been turned upside down on its axis and we have to stick with the continuing news on that front. You have questions. We have questions. Is travel, except for specific business, frivolous right now? Does travel in fact bring us closer together? That's what we believe. We're just not sure when we should get out and build those cultural bridges again. Thanks for bearing with us as we examine travel's new world order. And thanks for coming along with us, on this week's voyage of The Savvy Traveler.

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