As I’ve grown older, I’ve become a lot more realistic vs. optimistic and in certain cases - quite cynical of the world we live in. Seeing the ups and downs at a crazy pace has led me to realize that not everything is as it seems.
Fast-forward to this past weekend: my wife and I spent a few days at Universal Studios in Orlando. She’s a huge fan of Harry Potter and from all that I had read, it was worth visiting the theme park.
Despite battling the heat for two full days, I have to say that I am impressed! I’ve read every book in the series and the minute I stepped into either Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade, it felt like I was transported into another universe.
The employees at the Resort always had a smile on their face and stayed in character 100% of the time. The Butterbeer was incredible and the attention to detail was on another level. Every little thing mimicked the Harry Potter universe - down to their own currency which was legal tender at the Park.
As a technologist, I was also amazed at how they implemented the wands throughout. For context, visitors can purchase a want for ~$50 and then use the sensors on the tip of the wands to interact with various window displays - making it a highly amusing people watching activity.
While neither of did any of the rides, we had an incredible time admiring the details and capping it off with a beautiful light show at Hogwarts.
I had a few meetings in Hong Kong and instead of flying all the way around the world for 2 days, I decided to stop by Hong Kong for a few days. With no specific agenda in mind - with the exception of good food and some photography - it was an exhilarating trip filled with cultural nuances and some incredible new opportunities.
A few years ago, my brother and I visited Turks & Caicos on a whim. It was a fairly inexpensive destination, it was close to New York and the landscape looked amazing!
When we got there, it was empty and we had an absolute blast!
Fast-forward 7 years later to this past weekend – my wife took me to Turks & Caicos for an early birthday celebration and it wasn’t anything like our first visit there:
Flights have gotten significantly more expensive
Full-service hotels aren’t even close to being affordable - even the base hotel room costs more than an overwater villa in some of the nicer Maldivian resorts
While still relatively empty, the amount of people on the islands have increased dramatically
I think it is only a matter of time where all these untouched and natural landscapes get overrun by tourists. But for now - there’s still time to explore the best of nature.