Passports with Purpose Favorite Prizes

As a founder of Passports with Purpose, the annual travelbloggers fundraiser, I don’t get to participate the prize sweepstakes. This bums me out. Every year there are amazing things up for grabs and every year I think, “Oh, if I wasn’t involved I would so want to bid on…”

But I can dream, right? If I was eligible to give, here’s what I’d go for:

Peter Carey’s 21 Day Photo Trek in Nepal: Peter’s a friend, so maybe I’m biased (just a little) but I hardly knew him at all when we went on that road trip from Seattle to Chicago a few years back. I know he’s great to travel with, he’s patiently answered my photography questions, and friends who have taken his classes rave about how he’s helped their photography. Plus, Nepal. I’d love to do this trip.

Lanore’s Magellan GPS xPlorist: We kind of like gadgets at our house and one of the things we don’t have is a nice GPS system. We’re always off to … somewhere. And sometimes, we get lost. There are many times I would find a voice command GPS unit useful.

Ciao Bambino’s Mexico retreat: Luxury penthouse with a private swimming pool? Hello! Private beach and breakfast cooked for me every morning? What? I am an independent sort who likes places without gates, but who doesn’t have rock star fantasies about how the other half lives? The place sleeps eight, you could bring your band.

Brad’s tuition to Keoki’s camp: I felt a tremendous pang of … not homesickness, but, something like it when looking at the pictures of this year’s November music camp in Pahala on the Big Island of Hawaii. Anyone who is a) connected to the island through the music and b) plays guitar or ukulele and c) wants to have a Hawaii experience that will indelibly change your sense of what Hawaii is will find this a remarkable experience. I can’t tell you what your time there will be like, but I left with a full heart and the nerve to call myself a musician. No big deal, right? Yeah. (What, you need a ukulele, too? I got yer back.)

Megy’s fair trade box of wonderful things: Megy has pulled together a box of beautiful objects, some of them edible, and one of the reasons it appeals to me is that I think the box of stuff will smell amazing when you open it, like coffee and chocolate and far away places. I love the idea of this collection of handmade (or grown) things from around the world finding their way into my home, it feels a little bit like a global souvenir shopping spree.

There are so many wonderful things on the table this year, the mind boggles. I love seeing the listings come in, I love watching the donations run up, and I love the part where we notify the winners. But I also feel a little bit jealous… none of this great stuff will end up in my house or stamped on my passport. I’ll remind myself that it’s good work, it for a great cause, and if it’s better to give than to receive, this is a hell of a giving opportunity. Go see for yourself.

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