Your Very Next Step newsletter for March 2008 (Part II)

“The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.”

~ Leonardo da Vinci

Your Very Next Step newsletter for March 2008 (Part II)

“Your Very Next Step” newsletter, published by Ned Lundquist, is a cooperative community, and everyone is invited, no…encouraged, no…urged to participate.

“The longest journey begins with a single step, not with the turn of an ignition key.”

– Edward Abbey

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*** In this issue:

*** Travel News

*** The snowshoe is on the right foot

*** Trip Report – Ned and family are back from France

*** Is it too noisy at an NBA game?

*** Interesting freelance travel writers URL.

*** 25 trekking poles

*** Keeping the bugs off

Travel, Outdoor and Adventure Jobs and Volunteer Opportunities

*** Captain – Whale Watching Vessel, San Juan Safaris, Harbor WA

*** Assistant Marketing Manager, Jumeirah Emirates Towers Sales & Marketing,

Dubai, UAE

*** 2008 FIELD TEAM MEMBERS, Maine Conservation Corps, Augusta ME

In this edition of “Your Very Next Step,” Ned visits Paris, and plans for Dubai.

In the next issue edition of “Your Very Next Step,” Ned plans for Dubai and Djibouti.

Travel news:

*** Baggage burden: Searching for a solution to airlines' costly habit of losing luggage

*** Tired of being tied up in Chicago? Try Gary, Indiana:

*** Aloha:

Aloha Airlines is back in bankruptcy, but is continuing to operate: It may be for sale.

*** You are now free to use your cell phone:

Emirates said that the “first authorized mobile phone call made from a commercial flight” occurred yesterday aboard one of its A340-300s flying at 30,000 ft. en route from Dubai to Casablanca, marking the launch of its $27 million program to equip its fleet with the AeroMobile system that will allow passengers to use their own cell phones in flight. Air Transport World reports:

Bernie Wagenblast’s Transportation Communications Newsletter reports that British Airways will require fingerprints and photos of all passengers in new Heathrow terminal.

Beware: Big Brother has Got You Fingered

Link to column in The Times:

To subscribe to Bernie’s free newsletter, send an e-mail to:

*** Tell us about your recent travel adventure. Send to Ned at

*** The snowshoe is on the right foot:

Hi Ned,

I liked the article…especially the way you communicate how easy, accessible and healthy snowshoeing is. Your perspective aligns with what we say here at L.L.Bean with regard to projecting the sport as being easy to get into, with a very shallow learning curve, terrific exercise and great for the whole family…plus you can do it almost anywhere. The benefits of snowshoeing are numerous and you captured this quite well. In addition as a side note, L.L.Bean works with TSL and Tubbs.

Speaking of making snowshoeing easy, this past winter L.L.Bean became the first retailer in the world to market a recreational 'step-in' snowshoe. I have attached a press release for your reference, as well as a link to the product.

L.L.Bean Trailblazer Step-In Snowshoe Package

This revolutionary designs makes snowshoeing even easier and more accessible…there are no bindings to fiddle with when you have cold hands, so it can make snowshoeing much more enjoyable. We sell this as a package and it should be noted that the boots can be worn for everyday winter wear, whether it be shoveling your driveway, going snowshoeing or heading to the grocery store! We have received excellent press from these shoes and the customer feedback has also been awesome! If you need more information on these shoes or hi-res images, let me know…take good care and please let me know if you have any questions, or if I can be of further assistance!

Mac McKeever

Senior Public Relations Representative

L.L.Bean, Inc.

*** From TalkMail:

Checked Amtrak's fare prices lately? godivabrit has and is wondering how anyone can justify taking a long train trip when they could fly and stay in a hotel for less. Is this kind of journey it's own reward, or is it just one big romanticized rip off?

*** Ned and family are back from France. The populace of Paris was very friendly, welcoming, and warm. My kids could live on crepes and Nutella.

The children of the gypsies that pestered me 20 years ago pestered me this trip. I know this, I can win a staring contest with a gypsy girl, and she doesn’t like it. I won the contest, but she issued a curse upon me and my descendants in a Roma dialect that I couldn’t translate literally but could comprehend the basic meaning and intent.

I was in a bookstore where an attractive woman was reading a copy of “Why do men love bitches,” and wondered what she was thinking.

Our hotel, the Saint James et Albany, has a new buffet (installed at the hotel during our visit) for le petite dejeuner. We watched the French equivalent of the Three Stooges get it into the hotel and down the stairs to the basement level. The basement is where you will find the pool, and spa. There is a glass vase containing a fish on the desk of the receptionist at the spa. The fish is named “Ruby.” Or, “Robby” in English. Or Rooby? I asked her if Rooby was a boy or a girl? She shrugged, and smiled. I asked her if Rooby spoke French or English. “Neither,” she said. “Arabic.” She (the receptionist) is from Fez in Morocco.

The Hotel St. James et Albany is a four-star property, which I think requires a doorman in a fancy uniform. This was not always present, however, and so the two pairs of double sliding doors were configured such that if the out doors were open, the inner pair would remain closed, like the airlock on the space shuttle. If people were walking out, and I was following behind, the front doors wouldn't open until I stood back far enough to deactivate the door sensors. The elevators were tiny, and original equipment back in 1779 when the Marquis de Lafayette was married there, and Marie Antoinette was appearing in Dancing with the stars. The elevators claimed to carry no more than four people. But that never happened while I was there. I usually made the trip with just one other person, and that would max out the weight limit. In fact, the elevators were frequently on the blink. The hall way leading to our rooms was very French, or so I should imagine, what with all the engravings of English manors adorning the wall. You had to walk down several stairs to get out of my room, and I bonked my noggin on the overhead again and again.

We visited the Orsay, and had lunch there. A couple saw us in the café line. She was a Red Sox fan, and he was a Cubs fan. We talked about growing up imbued with the fatalism, hope and disappointment. “Do you go to bed in the 7th ahead 12-3, or do you know you can still lose,” she said.

You could buy fresh-made crepes on just about any block. Tom and Barbara liked Nutella smeared all over theirs, where as I liked Grand Mariner, the orange liquor similar to Triple Sec or Cointreau.

We bought large meringues at Maison Auvray boulangerie, in the Latin Quarter (I think). Barbara got chocolate, and I got the coffee. It was ginormous.I still have some.

There was a conference going on at the hotel. I never saw any of the delegates, but the woman manning the desk in the lobby seemed to be on duty the entire time we were in Paris.

I used the “Business Center” in the hotel to check emails. I purchased an access card. I was going to get a 60 minute card, but they didn’t have any, so they sold me a 180 minute card for the same price. It still has about five minutes left.

Our hotel had a terrific location on the Rue de Rivoli, right across from the Lourve, and down a block or so. We could walk to the Musée d'Orsay or the Lourve in the cold and windy rain without getting too wet.

We purchased four-day museum passes, good for most museums in the area, in advance. This also entitles one to avoid the lines to purchase tickets or to get inside.

We enjoyed the La Fontaine de Mars on rue Saint Dominick, not far from the Eiffel Tower, on two occasions. Our waiter looked like a refugee from Flock of Seagulls, or Kajagoogoo perhaps. On our first visit, Barbara and Tom had the grilled top loin of beef. Barbara has the escargots as a starter. It came with Béarnaise sauce, which Tom left untouched on the side. Laura had the roast baby lamb with a glass of Gaillac, from the southwest of France. There were some large containers of herb-like substance behind the bar. Mint, for infusing into the tea, I was told. “It’s not marijuana,” my waiter whispered to me.

About midway through the flight coming back from Paris to Dulles, the person sitting behind me said, “Aren’t you Ned Lundquist?”

Turns it it was Rob Martin, now with E-Corpernicus and a member of IABC/Washington. He was attending a conference in Paris and stayed at the Westin, a block or so away from the Saint James et Albany. We’ll have to ask Rob for a trip report. Upon arrival, in the Passport Control line at Dulles, Rob introduced me to Norman Mineta, who had attended the same conference as Rob. He introduced himself and his wife to my family, and I explained to my family that he used to be the secretary of the Coast Guard.

*** Is it too noisy at an NBA game?

Ned asked the Washington Wizards why it was so noisy at the games at Verizon Center. Turns out they heard, and are tuning it down:

This is a follow-up to our conversation a few weeks ago at the gate at O'Hare, where he met Zack Bolno. In turn, Danny Zollars, Director of Game Operations, answered my questions:

Ned: I understand that the Wizard's have toned down the noise and hyperactivity at games? Were the games getting a little too frantic? Why is that?

Danny: We have decided that we didn't want to have constant music during play so we cut back on that. Across the league, teams play music while the ball is in play and we thought this got a little repetitive and annoying game after game.

What kind of feedback were you getting?

Danny: I wouldn't say the games were too frantic but there was too much noise throughout the game. We got a lot of feedback from our fans and they wanted to hear the sneakers squeak and the coaches talking to the players. We have a very knowledgeable fan base so basketball comes first and the promotions come second.

Ned: Are you trying to be more family-friendly? How have things changed? Are the changes working? How do you know?

Danny: The fans have responded in a positive way and enjoy the games this season. This is something the league is trying to move towards but we are one of the first to drastically cut the noise down. We still have a ton of promos during timeouts but its more about the constant music during play and cutting it back.

Ned: Does it bother the players to have that blaring music all the time?

Danny: We asked Gilbert Arenas that last summer and he said they don't even notice it when they are on the court. They are focused on defense and running through the plays.

*** Careful is my middle name:


I know you are very careful with things like this. However, I'd love it if you would consider an appeal to Your Very Next Step readers for a very special cause. Last month, in the course of my public relations duties I met a wonderful, inspiring young man.

About a year ago, Jeremy Schmidt, an avid outdoorsman and search and rescue volunteer went blind – in less than one month. Jeremy lost his vision to an extremely rare genetic condition that severed the connection between his eyes and his brain. There is no cure. Instead of a sob story, Jeremy’s is one of amazing triumph, courage and service to mankind.

This remarkable 27-year-old wants to lead youngsters from the Arizona School for Blind Children on hikes so they can learn to appreciate nature, enjoy the outdoors and hone their senses and skills. It is the outdoors that Jeremy loves most.

We are hoping you will read the attached articles and consider donating 25 trekking poles (or gift cards to REI, L.L. Bean, Sierra Outdoor Traders or other outdoor outfitters) so these children can follow trails and climb safely. The lightweight red and white canes that the vision impaired use in normal activities are not sufficient for hiking.

To communicate with Jeremy directly, email him at

Thank you for your consideration,

Heather Murphy

Director, Communications & Public Affairs

Pinal County

Owner, Southpaw Fine Photos

*** From Janet Ochs Lowenbach:

Here’s an interesting freelance travel writers URL.

*** Advice for Stephanie?

Hi Ned,

Do you know of any great resources for Americans to find a job abroad. I'm in my mid-twenties and still have the travel bug. I recently quit my desk job and am working on a cruise ship until May but would love to get a job abroad. Any suggestions?



*** This being March Madness, I found these McGuireisms while I was watching Marquette beat Kentucky:

McGuire phrase Translation

go barefoot in the wet grass enjoy the moment

congratulate the temporary live for the moment

carnival gates are closed game's over

salt and pepper coach X's and O's coach

cupcakes easy opponents

white knuckler close game

French pastry a showy move

cracked sidewalks bad part of town

sand fights hard-fought games

yellow ribbons and medals success in recruiting

tailenders walk-ons or complementary players

Dunkirk an extremely poor performance

dance hall player short on talent, but long on effort

memos and pipes university administrators and professors

two loaves of bread under their arms good jobs

seashells and balloons victory and happiness

curtains game's over

tap city game's over

aircraft carrier big center

cloud piercer player who jumps well

ballerina in the sky player who jumps well

*** When you're outside and want to avoid mosquitoes, sand fleas, or other pests, an insect repellant with DEET is recommended. This is important to me with some upcoming travel in known sand flea and mosquito territory. What is DEET?

DEET is the common name for N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide, which is the active ingredient in the most widely used insect repellents applied to the skin.

According to S. C. Johnson, which makes OFF and related products:

DEET is the active chemical ingredient in most insect repellents available in the United States. It is used to repel such biting pests as mosquitoes and ticks-including ticks that may carry Lyme disease. DEET was registered in the U.S. for the general public to use in 1957.

Generally, the higher the percentage of DEET, the longer the repellent works.

Higher concentrations of DEET are recommended for activities that keep you outside all day in geographic regions with large populations of insects and ticks.

Lower concentrations are acceptable when you are planning to be outdoors for only a few hours.

Mary Beth Adler, a nurse practitioner with a PhD in infectious diseases, recommends a good daily application of an insect repellant with at least 30% DEET. Normal OFF doesn't have that concentration, but the small pump bottle of Deep Woods Sportsmen OFF does:

DEET is produced by Morflex, Inc. and sold to companies who make consumer insect repellents.

Why are sand fleas a worry, and what is Leishmaniasis?

According to the CDC:

Leishmaniasis (LEASH-ma-NIGH-a-sis) is a parasitic disease spread by the bite of infected sand flies. There are several different forms of leishmaniasis. The most common forms are cutaneous (cue-TAY-knee-us) leishmaniasis, which causes skin sores, and visceral (VIS-er-al) leishmaniasis, which affects some of the internal organs of the body (for example, spleen, liver, bone marrow).

Leishmaniasis is spread by the bite of some types of phlebotomine sand flies. Sand flies become infected by biting an infected animal (for example, a rodent or dog) or person. Since sand flies do not make noise when they fly, people may not realize they are present. Sand flies are very small and may be hard to see; they are only about one-third the size of typical mosquitoes.

The best way for travelers to prevent leishmaniasis is by protecting themselves from sand fly bites. Vaccines and drugs for preventing infection are not yet available.

Apply insect repellent on uncovered skin and under the ends of sleeves and pant legs. Follow the instructions on the label of the repellent. The most effective repellents are those that contain the chemical DEET (N,N-diethylmetatoluamide). The concentration of DEET varies among repellents. Repellents with DEET concentrations of 30-35% are quite effective, and the effect should last about 4 hours.

Leishmaniasis is found in parts of about 88 countries. Approximately 350 million people live in these areas. Most of the affected countries are in the tropics and subtropics. The settings in which leishmaniasis is found range from rain forests in Central and South America to deserts in West Asia. More than 90 percent of the world's cases of visceral leishmaniasis are in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sudan, and Brazil.

*** Captain – Whale Watching Vessel, San Juan Safaris, Harbor WA

This is a perfect position for someone who either has winter work or does not need year-round work.


Perform daily tours. Captains are responsible for safe operation & safety features, basic maintenance, accurate logs, overseeing first mate/naturalist duties and setting a good example for wildlife viewing ethics &methods on the water. Season: Mid-April to October. Must be available Saturdays, Sundays and evenings.

Major Job Duties:

1. Conducting daily tours

2. Perform ethical &responsible wildlife viewing practices

3. Oversee the upkeep and maintenance of vessels

4. Oversee 1st mate duties

5. Maintain a high standard of quality for our tours

6. Maintain positive relationships with staff

7. Abide by Whale Watch Operators Northwest Best Practices Guidelines for wildlife viewing and adhere to company standards

8. Maintain a daily ship's log

Special Certifications & Skills

1. 50 to 100 ton USCG Masters License

2. Strong single screw boat handling skills

3. Detail oriented. Safety oriented work ethic

4. Must be team oriented and enjoy working with others

5. Capable of working long hours/flexible hours

6. Capable of lifting 60 pounds


1. Well versed on local & federal laws regarding wildlife viewing. Must be familiar with the Whale Watch Operators Association North West (WWOANW) ( ) guidelines and adhere to them strictly. (Our resident Orca whales and Chinook salmon are on the endangered species list. The federal and local governments have instituted a law that further protects our local whales. San Juan Safaris is serious about setting a good example for viewing etiquette. The techniques necessary to observe whales without interfering with their life processes takes time to learn and requires additional skills apart from just captaining a boat.)

2. Background in eco-tourism preferred, special training in marine ecology recommended. Position is for a dedicated person who understands and respects marine mammals and our company's philosophy. Please read our position paper prior to applying


1. must adhere to company dress code

2. Must be first aid and CPR certified

3. Subject to drug testing

4. Land line or cell phone with voice mail

5. E-mail address and check daily

6. Non-smoker

7. Transportation

Rewards &Benefits:

Up to $20 – $25 per hour DOE, plus tips. Work in a world class, outdoor marine environment with fun, caring people, bald eagles, great blue heron and other birds, river otter, wild mink, orca, humpback, gray & minke whales. Discounts on outdoor gear and local restaurant. Free kayak and whale watching tours on a “space available” basis, discounts for family and friends. Make life-long friendships

*** Assistant Marketing Manager, Jumeirah Emirates Towers Sales & Marketing,

Dubai, UAE

*** 2008 FIELD TEAM MEMBERS, Maine Conservation Corps, Augusta ME



“Bringing Dreams to Reality”

The Maine Conservation Corps is dedicated to accomplishing outdoor recreation and conservation projects. MCC engages teams throughout the State of Maine.

May 21 to August 15, 2008

May 21 to November 14, 2008

Rebuild the Appalachian Trail

Improve trails throughout Maine

Build Great Things with Great People

MCC crews:

•Have fun and make new friends.

•Live in some of Maine’s most beautiful places.

•Learn outdoor living skills.

•Build experience in the field of Natural Resources.

•Improve fitness through rugged and satisfying outdoor service.

•Help maintain and restore Maine’s Park and Public Lands.

Qualifications: Have the ability to live and perform strenuous work under challenging conditions, have the desire to learn and serve with others to make a difference, be at least 18 years old, and must be a US citizen.


$240 per week and health insurance

$1250 or $2360 AmeriCorps education award if eligible

For information and application:

Brenda Webber

Maine Conservation Corps

124 State House Station

Augusta ME 04333

207-624-6085 & 1-800-245-5627/ in Maine

Application Deadline April 4, 2008

The Maine Department of Conservation provides equal opportunity in employment and programs. Auxiliary aids and services are available to individuals with disabilities upon request

If you enjoy the outdoors and want to explore Maine's beautiful places, take a closer look at the Maine Conservation Corps. Whether you're backpacking to remote Appalachian Trail worksites, patrolling trails at Acadia National Park, building mountain bike trails around Portland or constructing a wheelchair path, MCC will provide field team members and leaders with valuable outdoor and trail skills over a 3-9 month period. Benefits include a living allowance ranging from $240 to $475 per week, health insurance, an AmeriCorps education award (if eligible) and training that includes wilderness first aid and chainsaw certification, teambuilding, communication, conflict resolution, leadership, trail rigging, stone working and timber construction. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, at least 18 (20 for leadership positions), physically fit, have the desire to learn and serve, and be motivated to work with people of all ages and backgrounds. For more information contact Brenda Webber or call 207.624.6085.

*** Your Very Next Step is a service of the Job of the Week Network LLC

© 2008 The Job of the Week Network LLC

Edward Lundquist, ABC

Editor and Publisher

Your Very Next Step

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Springfield, VA 22153

Home office phone: (703) 455-7661

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“I am—really am—an extremist, one who lives and loves by choice far out on the very verge of things, on the edge of the abyss, where this world falls off into the depths of another. That’s the way I like it.”

– Edward Abbey

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