Ally Tucker has the most fabulous retirement plan, to take 6 months off and travel round the world.She has an outline itinerary in mind too, first stop New Zealand touring round in a motor home, taking in the beautiful, open scenery.Then a small ship cruise on the Paul Gaugin around the islands of the South Pacific (shes done this one before), a visit to Australia to meet up with family and then a leisurely plane ride home, stopping off on the way, definitely in Thailand, other stops to be determined!
What an interesting, well travelled woman.Recently employee of the year at Tropical Sky in Sussex, Ally has worked for British Caledonian (remember those kilts?), owned and run an Italian restaurant and is now a customer services agent for Tropical Sky.She holds that view that the world is a fantastic place and she is exploring it, in many and varied ways.Even her childhood memories of holidays in Cornwall held a hint of what was to come.
At a Herman & the Hermits concert a prize was offered to the first person on stage in a string vest, Allys dad leapt up and won a record of course, vinyl that is.The only slight drawback was that the family didnt own a record player, the purchase of which eventually made that single the most expensive ever bought! Contrast this with the trip to Los Angeles Ally took her parents on using her first BCal concession, it cost just 5 each!
We talked about the Caribbean. Why not, when its grey and cold in the UK.Allys recommendation was the Grenadines, a bit like the Maldives she said, glorious, small and certainly a far cry from grey.She also has fond memories of St Lucia as her son got married there and she knows the island pretty well. I suspect shes not a lady to be confined to the luxury of an all inclusive hotel.Which led us to talk of Algeria, and a trip with a friend in the 70s. They left Algiers and hitched a plane ride with some American oilmen, ending up in a desert oasis in Ghardaia, where they were the first white woman most villagers had ever seen.So, it was remote then I asked.Indeed Ally replied, adding that an emergency landing on the way back to Algiers, caused by the baggage hold opening whilst mid-air, left her unfazed and ready for further exotic trips.
More recently, Ally took her mother and three friends to Las Vegas, where they flew to the Grand Canyon in a helicopter.They explored the canyon on horseback, but Allys mother got stuck and had to be rescued by cowboys!Cue an overnight stay in a log cabin, songs round the camp fire and then a return helicopter flight to Vegas, where all five ladies snuggled up in a super kingsize bed and drank tea, before exploring the bizarre sights that only Las Vegas can offer.
Indian Ocean islands are some of Allys favourite recommendations for Silver Travellers who like to journey long haul.She has visited the Maldives for work (some job!) and also with her family, where her picture of total paradise (blue seas, cloudless skies and absolute tranquillity) was somewhat challenged by five days of wind and rain!Mauritius does not disappoint with excellent service and good golfing, along with the beautiful Seychelles where glorious walks can be enjoyed.
Another great place for Silver Travellers is Australia, where Ally celebrated her twenty fifth wedding anniversary by climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge with her husband, toasting themselves with champagne at the very top.Her husband arranged a spontaneous flight along the coast, the Blue Mountains and the Hunter Valley.A glorious treat.Philip Island was another unexpected delight with a race track, and a walk through the extraordinary nesting site of penguins on a freezing cold night.
There have also been safaris to Kenya and Zambia, meeting Masai villagers and over friendly hippos, all most enjoyable and with great memories, although no video footage as Ally admits she is somewhat technically challenged.The trip to the South Pacific stands out as a remarkable experience, island hopping with a historian sharing the Captain Cook story on the way.To repeat this as part of the retirement trip is a dream I am certain Ally and her husband will certainly fulfil, with many stories to tell when they return.
For holidays to the Caribbean,Silver Travel Advisor recommends Tropical Sky
For holidays to Australia, Silver Travel Advisor recommends Australian Sky
For holidays to New Zealand, Silver Travel Advisor recommends New Zealand Sky