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Overview

  • 312 references 113 Confirmed & Positive
  • Ambassador
  • Fluent in English; learning Afrikaans, Spanish
  • 55, Female
  • Member since 2007
  • Lawyer, but a "good" one as I don't sue anyone.
  • Univ of Florida; Univ of Sienna (Italy); Richmond College...
  • No hometown listed
  • Profile 100% complete

About Me

CURRENT MISSION

Travel to SEE THE WORLD - - I am at 117 COUNTRIES to date!
IN NOVEMBER 2018, I got to (and even CAMPED) on my 7th continent, ANTARCTICA!!! In 2019, I headed the opposite direction to the High ARCTIC above parallel 81°!!!
DREAM GOAL OF BOTH POLAR REGIONS WITHIN A YEAR!

ABOUT ME

My goal is to see this amazing world we live in, to experience all that it has to offer, and to meet as many people as possible!

I have traveled to all 50 US States, all 7 continents, and 117 nations!

I have lived in Italy and England, but call Florida in the US my home.

In 2007, I took my longest trip. It was a seven-week, seven-country journey of 20,000 miles across the South Pacific from Australia to Hawaii. I am an active traveler, and do not "vacation". I "travel". I like to see everything a place has to offer; I rarely just sit on a beach (well, I did in the South Pacific. . . but I also went 4WD-ing, snorkeling, kayaking, to museums, to national parks, ate exotic food. . . you get the idea).

[2007 was my first 7-week trip; 2009 was my second to India/Pakistan/Nepal; 2015 was my third, driving across 7 Southern African countries].

At home, I do a radio program called "Lady Lawyer Live" that disseminates legal information to callers; the format is a live, call-in show.

I am very active with local charities and civic organizations. My most active involvements currently include Meals On Wheels supplying 4700 meals a month to shut-ins; raising funds for a handicapped children's playground; and Kiwanis (I am a life member).

I am a social drinker and non-smoker. I have a kitten named STAR (my 19-year old cat and bird recently passed away).

PHILOSOPHY

Live today like it is your last!

Why I’m on Couchsurfing

HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING

***On April 17, 2018, I was asked to be one of the six CS Country Ambassadors for the US (my Territory is Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.)(Update: August 2020: We are now FIVE AMBs)

Previously, I volunteered as a CS Country Ambassador (USA from 6/17/08 to the end of that Ambassador program in February 2011)(my regional territory was Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and South Florida; there were 15 Country AMBs in 2011); prior to and following being a Country AMB for two periods, I volunteered as City Ambassador for Winter Haven, Florida [until the City AMB program was modified to a general AMB program by CS in August 2013; as of March of 2018, there were 332 General Ambassadors for CS].

***I MODERATE the "POLK COUNTY FLORIDA" CS Group and organize their monthly socials! The Group site contains links to restaurants, attractions and visitors bureaus for CENTRAL FLORIDA; so I encourage you to use it as a resource to plan time in this great part of Florida! Direct URL is:

https://www.couchsurfing.com/groups/6559

***I am most well known for running events - - at home around Central Florida and abroad when I travel!

***I actively promote CS off the site - - through speaking engagements (on the radio, and at civic clubs) and other social media (facebook).

***I also moderate the NYC-New Years Eve Group. I co-moderate the USA CS GROUP; US SOUTHERN AMBASSADORS GROUP; FLORIDA CS GROUP; FLORIDA KAYAKERS GROUP; CS EVENTS-SE USA; several Ambassador Groups and ORLANDO CS GROUP.

***I was one of the 'responsible' Ambassadors concerning couches in Peru, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and Panama. Yeah, that's a big title for a small job ;-)

***I have served on two Working Committees: New Member Greeting, and Event Invitation Approvals. I have approved more than 150 events worldwide; it is so fun to see the creative event ideas that CSers come up with! As a New Member Greeter starting in 2008, I personally welcomed over 2150 people to the CS Family!
Starting in 2018, via computer-assisted greeting, I've corresponded with at least 100 more people.

***I enjoy trading travel information in CS online groups!

***I am actively seeking ways to creatively help other CS members. . . for instance, I organized a photography display in my city for a CSer living in Berlin, and a watercolor display for a CS artist friend from Stuart.

***I enjoy helping communities establish active CS groups and monthly events. I enjoy mentoring new members and other CS leaders that are just starting to be active.

***I have attended three national events - - Tent Surf in Colorado; Austin Texas Couch Crash 2019; & Atlanta Peach Couch Crash Sept 2020.

*** I have organized 182 CS events/activities -- in Polk County, Florida, USA; Tampa, Florida, USA; Ybor City, Florida; St Petersburg, Florida; Orlando, Florida, USA; Gatorland, Florida, USA; Vero Beach, Florida, USA; Manatee County, Florida, USA; Sarasota, Florida, USA; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Charleston, South Carolina, USA; Austin, Texas, USA; York, England; London, England; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Santiago de Chile; Arequipa, Peru; Bario Chino, Lima, Peru; Cartagena, Colombia; Lahore, Pakistan; Jaipur, India; Granada, Nicaragua; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Montanita, Ecuador; Cuenca, Ecuador; Singapore; Ubud, Bali, Indonesia; Kupang, West Timor, Indonesia; Nelspruit, South Africa; Hermanus, South Africa; Flagstaff, Arizona; Lilongwe, Malawi; Blantyre, Malawi; Milan, Italy; Punta Arenas, Patagonia, Chile; Oslo, Norway; Rome, Italy; Kuwait City, Kuwait; 7 Virtual World Trivia Games during the global pandemic; Largo, Florida.

Some of the More Unusual Events were:

[#99 and 104 Chalet Suzanne on 3/21/14 and 7/18/14]
[#100 International Pot Luck 4/13/14]
[#103 Moonrise Photo Shoot-Lake Wales, Florida 7/12/14]
[#106 Annual Grape Stomp -- I called it "Couch Stomp" 8/16/14]
[#121 Eating Crocodile -Malawi 5/27/16]
[#128 CS Q & A at Ricks on the River-Tampa, FL 4/2017]
[An entire Art and Foodie Weekend with 5 events over 3 days in St Petersburg]

***I am pleased to have met, traveled with, CS'd with, dined with or done a CS social with these 1148 great people, whom I have met IN PERSON:

Three CSers in Edinburgh, Scotland (Erin~ my first host; Callum; Tabi~host);
One CSer from Paris (Bastien) 🇫🇷;
One French Canadian CSer (Anick);
One CSer in Manchester, England (Andreas);
Seven CSers in York, England;
One CSer in London (Gulen~host) 🇬🇧;
One Pennsylvania USA CSer (CollegiateGal ~ as guest)
Polk County/Central Florida CSers (Doug, Chris, Julie, Rich, Jonathan, John N., Nora, Kelley, Frances, Aida, Gary, Allen, Jet, Gwen, Rosalind, Julia, Lucy, Tracy, Curt; a dozen at Aida/Alayne's Halloween Party 2011; Tannia, Dean, Tannia's daughter Ann, Dave T, Cathy, Phil, Ann, Kristin, Laura, Rosa, Rocky, Gena, John C., Richard C., Stefano, Aggie, Drew, Edward, Gordon, Philipp, Samuel, Roy, Craig, Patricia, Wendy, Roger, Shay, David, Maryna, Mindy, Isabel, Tiffany, Brendan, Jennie, Cory, Jean;
18 friends of the Polk County/Central Florida CSers, Doug R, Jim, Drew, Jena, April, David A., Steven, Jason C, Matt;
35 at the CS SOCIAL WITH SOMEONE FROM EVERY CONTINENT on December 7, 2007 held by the joint CS groups of Tampa and Polk County; I enjoyed all the US/UK/Australian/Brazilian/Indian/Greek CSers and frinds at Terra Sur and John N's (John~host in 2007, 2008, 2011 and 2018);
One CSer in Buenos Aires, Argentina (Valerie ~ host) 🇦🇷;
CS SOCIAL in Buenos Aires with 20 people from 10 COUNTRIES;
Three CSers in Santiago de Chile (Nicole {host}, Trent and Dana);
CS REGIONAL CENTRAL FLORIDA SOCIAL in Orlando with 48 people (Christian~host);
Sarasota CSers (Jeremy and David);
CSers on Two CS Kayaking trips on the Hillsborough River;
Two CSers in Ponce, Puerto Rico (Begona and Antonio~hosts);
One CSer in San Juan, Puerto Rico (Amy D.~host);
CSers at the two Bok Tower Picnics;
38 CSers in Ybor City (Alayne~host; surfed with Eric);
11 CSers at Laura's first big event at Quiet Waters park (Laura~host);
9 CSers for Indian Food in Orlando;
10 at the Wine Event in Winter Haven;
5 CSers and spouses in St Augustine ("Pirate" Conrad~ host);
29 at Hickory Hollow BBQ & Beer Bash (Mike D~host);
CSers at the Multi-Day (2 Day, 3 event) ART WEEKEND in St Pete, Florida (Dali Museum, Ansel Adams Tour, Ceviche's Tapas Restaurant Celebration) (Paula/LadyPaula and Buddy~hosts);
Erik and Trees Libbrecht from Belgium during their Florida trip 🇧🇪;
At the Two-Day BBQs north of Vero Beach, Florida (24 surfers at the first one; 16 surfers at the third one; Mi, Taka, Jean, many other great CSers; Marika in August 2010 kayaking weekend) (Ranger Terry~host & friend extraordinaire! );
One CSer in Jacksonville, Florida (Brock~host);
Eleven at Joe Pasta CS Happy Hour and touring in Charleston (Lee~host);
One CSer and a classic sailboat in Fernandina Beach, Florida (Robert and "Candide" ~host)
Two CSers in Santiago de Chile (Ale and Paul~hosts);
22 CSers at Galindo Restaurant representing 12 nations in Santiago de Chile;
1 CSer in La Serena, Chile (Gonzalo~host) 🇨🇱;
15 CSers at Istanbul Bar, Arequipa, Peru (Erick/Cecilia~host)[Fanny/Erick hosted me-NY NYE 2013]
10 CSers in Bario Chino, Lima, Peru (Christian~host) 🇵🇪;
25 CSers at PUB71 in Atlanta, Georgia (David~host)
1 CSer for lunch in Winter Haven, Florida, Ed;
5 in Colombia;
Two Ft Lauderdale trips ("Great Gear Party") (Lisa~host)
5 at "Little India" Restaurant in Denver;
2009 North American Camp Out in Colorado;
2 in Moab, Utah;
Central Asian CSers in Pakistan and India;
Nicaraguan CSers in Granada, Nicaragua;
Csers at Latin Dance Lesson, Sarasota, Florida - Peter and Justin (Rosalind~ host);
10 CSers in the Dominican Republic (Jota y Dina~hosts);
Alison from the UK 🇬🇧;
In Ecuador (Ines~host) 🇪🇨;
Jason [HappyJ - - my rocking cool friend] host in both Orlando, Florida and Albuquerque, New Mexico;
19 in Singapore (Kuni~host) 🇸🇬;
Arie's sister Beppy in Yogykarta, Java, Indonesia as host;
7 in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia 🇮🇩;
Filipa as Host in Dili, Timor-Leste (East Timor) 🇹🇱;
ORLANDO/POLK CS EVENT at THE NILE with 38 CSers from four Continents (Jason/HAPPYJ~host);
THAI TEMPLE CS EVENT (Eric, Martin, Duane, Mike, Allison, Mary, Pat, Mary);
Judy as Host in BSB, Brunei 🇧🇳;
Simon as Host in KK, Malaysian Borneo 🇲🇾;
Jonathan as Host in Puerto Princessa, Palawan, Philippines;
Travel Buddies, Madi and Ashley, in the Philippines 🇵🇭;
Japs and Maria as hosts in Manila;
Jose Miguel and Fernando in Colchester, England 🇬🇧;
Salvo (Crazy Chef) as host in London;
Adriana as host in Celebration, Florida;
Cathy E as host in Eustis, Florida & Portland, Oregon;
Steve F as host in Renton, Washington;
Tom R as host in Portland, Oregon;
Cecilia as host in McMinnville, Wine Country, Oregon;
Nancy as host in Gleneden Beach, Oregon;
Sheila as host in Olympic Peninsula, Washington;
Bardia as host, Vancouver, Canada 🇨🇦;
Trudie as host in Nelspruit, South Africa;
Joanna & Maja-'car surf' hosts, Kruger Park, So. Africa;
Pieter as host near Sodwana Bay, South Africa;
Axel as host in Hermanus, South Africa;
Michael as host in Muizenburg/Cape Town, South Africa;
Dave T as host in Winter Haven, FL;
8 in NY State- Yvonne as host; Shirley as NYC host;
2 in Connecticut-Cecilia and Nick as host;
8 in Flagstaff, Arizona-Marguerite, Isaac and Catalina as host;
Nancy and Brian as host in Florida;
Walt, Wendy, Leah as host in Florida;
Melissa (and Derek) as host in Vero Beach, Florida.;
Delvalene as host in Kimberley, South Africa;
Maria (and Chris) as hosts in Maun, Botswana 🇧🇼;
Vanya as host, Walvis Bay, Namibia 🇳🇦;
Ziz and TK as hosts,Lilongwe, Malawi;
Mwaona as host in Zomba, Malawi;
Chris as host in Blantyre, Malawi 🇲🇼;
Lesley & Saul as hosts in Carlsbad Town, New Mexico;
Jeff P as host in Taos, New Mexico;
Andy in Tampa, Florida [so many times as host and travel adventurer :) ];
Devin in Tampa, Florida;
Natalia in Tampa, Florida;
Krysta and Evan in Spring Hill, Florida;
#1000 was Veronika, a Lady Lawyer from the Czech Republic who I met in Tampa in August of 2017;
#1001 Daniela from Czech Republic 🇨🇿;
Paul S as host & travel bud in Lutz, FL;
Sundeep from India in Tampa [I was the first CSer he met in person];
Bryan Z as host in Tampa, Florida (so many times- thank you!);
Thomas as host, Innsbruck, Austria 🇦🇹;
Markus as host in Schaan, Liechtenstein 🇱🇮;
Elisabetta as host in Milano, Italy 🇮🇹;
Daniel as host, Punta Arenas, Chile 🇨🇱;
Adriana as host in Austin, Texas;
COUCH CRASH AUSTIN 2019;
Kim P- host, Clearwater Beach, FL;
Bimal-host, Oslo, Norway 🇳🇴;
Steff-host, Rome, Italy 🇮🇹;
Vyola-HostASister/CS host, Kuwait 🇰🇼
Cecile-host, Bahrain;
Dennis-host, S. Tampa, FL, USA;
Maria S-host/travel buddy, St Petersburg, FL, USA;
Alisa-host/travel buddy, Indian Rocks Beach, FL, USA;
Rick R-host, Atlanta Peach Crash Sept 2020;
Ruthie-host, St George, Utah, USA;
Elliot-host, Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

COUCHSURFING EXPERIENCE

Since I joined CS in July of 2007, I have become embroiled in it!

I have truly enjoyed my CS experiences in the US~Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Puerto Rico, Colorado, Utah, NY, Washington, Oregon, New Mexico and Texas;
Chile; Argentina; Scotland; England; Peru; Colombia; Pakistan; India; Nicaragua; the Dominican Republic; Ecuador; Singapore; Indonesia; Timor-Leste (East Timor); Philippines; Brunei; Malaysian Borneo; Vancouver Canada; South Africa; Malawi; Austria; Liechtenstein; Italy; Norway; UAE; Kuwait.

Interests

****Travel is #1!!!****

Photography (landscape and travel photography in particular), sailboat racing, jeeping, travel writing, tantalizing conversation, history, art, jazz, reading, the law, gardening, hiking, kayaking, stargazing, movies, backgammon, performing arts, Asian food, fine dining, exotic cuisine, wine tastings, sightseeing, museums and being with friends.

  • arts
  • writing
  • performing arts
  • photography
  • wine tasting
  • fine dining
  • meditation
  • flying
  • gardening
  • movies
  • reading
  • traveling
  • jazz
  • hiking
  • backpacking
  • kayaking
  • snorkeling
  • sailing
  • law
  • sightseeing
  • beaches
  • parks
  • counting countries

Music, Movies, and Books

I just re-started "Three Cups of Tea" about girls' education in Pakistan. I am reading Steinbeck's books for the first time since college.

I read the WSJ daily, and two weekly newspapers.

I read "International Travel News" Magazine cover to cover on day of arrival (I write for them several times per year, but despite that it is The Most Amazing Magazine for intrepid travelers... you can get a free copy on their website).

Like many CSers, I regularly have one or two (or more) travel guidebooks on my coffee table!

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

I cannot pick one thing as life is full of unique experiences, but I offer these amazing experiences that will affect me for the rest of my life:

Seeing Mount Everest; experiencing Iguazu Falls in South America; horseback riding in the Andes; being on a rumbling volcano; viewing the Pyramids for the first time from the top of a camel; holding a koala in Australia; digging out of mud ruts that were three feet deep while 4WD-ing in Bora Bora; kayaking around the Bay of Islands in New Zealand; climbing to the highest point on China's great wall; getting emotional at the Taj Mahal; seeing Everest's peak clearly; riding an ostrich in South Africa; petting a cheetah and a giraffe in South Africa; seeing a pod of Orca Killer Whales in Antarctica; and being there when a friend needs me, even if it is 3 am.

Teach, Learn, Share

**I am a good amateur PHOTOGRAPHER. . . self-trained, but I have had four public showings of my work:
"Travel Photography from Every Continent" (35 mm);
"Southeastern Asian Panoramic Photography";
"Antelope Slot Canyon Nature Photography" (35 mm);
"Local Color from South America -- Candid People Photographs in Traditional Clothing".
In November 2012, I received my first invitation to do a paid photography job (a family portrait)! My second paid job was May 2013 with a professional portrait for an executive.

I am currently negotiating additional displays titled
"US National Park Photographs"; and
"Educating Hopefuls in Pakistan".

**I do some TRAVEL WRITING, as I love to share "how to" information about traveling.

In published travel articles, I have written items including:
"Pirates, Pleasures and The Panama Canal";
"Unique Panamanian Jewelry";
"Rome's Architectural Masterpiece";
"Volcano Surfing in Nicaragua"[ITN][additional publication at www.anthrotourist.com Oct. 2011];
"Salvadorian Surprises" [Feb. 2011 and March 2019];
"Ten Unique Accommodations in Indonesia" [Oct. 2011];
"Packing Your Third World Medical Kit for your Backpack" (with co-author
Douglas Re)[2012];
"Food and Beer Pairing in Estonia" [Nov. 2012];
"Report Card - Harwich, UK" [Dec. 2012];
"8 in 4 - Eight Things to do within the First Four Hours of A Cruise" [Dec. 2012];
"Zip Across The Dark Continent-African Flying Tips"[Uncommon Travelers
June 2015].

Pending publications are "Travel in SE Asia's Newest Country, Timor-Leste", "Travel Like a Local in Antigua" and "A Lawyer's Guide to Decoding Travel Brochures".

I have been published for contributed comments to LONELY PLANETs "LONDON"; "DOMINICAN REPUBLIC AND HAITI (2012)" and the Italian version on England "Inghilterra"(5th edition; 2009) guidebooks.

My comments garnered my being named in the LONELY PLANET Coastal California 4th Edition (C 2012) with the note 'helpful hints, useful advice, interesting anecdotes.'
In October 2016, I submitted proposed changes to LONELY PLANET
"MALAWI."

**I am working on my meditation skills, and want to LEARN more.

**I went to my first Latin Dance Lesson at a CS event and enjoyed it; need to learn more.

**I have been studying Spanish for a couple of years, and need to practice more.

** TO LEARN MORE ABOUT POLK COUNTY in CENTRAL FLORIDA just SOUTH OF ORLANDO, HELPFUL WEBSITES AND INFORMATION ON THE POLK COUNTY CS GROUP's SOCIALS AND ACTIVITIES CAN BE FOUND AT:

http://www.couchsurfing.com/group.html?gid=6559
(The link in my 'group' listing works better than this link).

**SOME GROUPS I BELONG TO:
Couchsurfing Ambassadors
Photography Aficionados of Orlando
Singles
Southern Africa
Asia
Omnivores
Events Outreach - Event Organizers
Florida Kayakers
Long Time Traveler
Hard Core Travellers' Blog
Operations-Meetings
Amazing Race

What I Can Share with Hosts

TRAVEL STORIES from around the Globe are my specialty!

Countries I’ve Visited

American Samoa, Angola, Antarctica, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, China, Christmas Island, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Fiji, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Isle of Man, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Latvia, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malawi, Malaysia, Mexico, Micronesia, Federated States of, Monaco, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Svalbard and Jan Mayen, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste (East Timor), Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vatican City State, Viet Nam, Virgin Islands, British, Virgin Islands, U.S., Zambia, Zimbabwe

Countries I’ve Lived In

Italy, United Kingdom, United States

Old School Badges

  • Vouches
    72 Vouches
  • Pioneer
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