HEADS UP for deals, giveaways and more!


As you may have guessed…I am a travel consultant, and as my blog is growing, I want to thank those who read it. I will be hosting giveaways and posting any travel deals that come my way from this day forward! If you are interested, please follow me so you don’t miss a thing!

If you want me to take a look at something specific, leave me a comment or send me an email (cate.ciu@flightcentre.ca; you don’t have to be from Canada).

In the meantime, hello and thank you to all of YOU from my grumpy, grumpy fur baby and I. Enjoy your week! ❤ ❤ ❤Photo on 7-16-15 at 2.37 PM


Why I left a promising academic career to be a travel agent. Part 2: Not all those who wander…


First order of business, you can read Part 1 here.

Like Lewis Carrol once wrote,”If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” So, here I was.

I think the biggest problem is that we sometimes don’t ask ourselves what we want, and that’s what happened to me. When I started my Master’s degree, I knew I wanted to do a good job, but I had no clue what I wanted to do afterward. My life was a Chopped ingredient basket: aimless, and somewhat ghastly. [Sidenote: I am speaking to the Canadian version of Chopped, which is particularly merciless to its contestants. Turducken? Are you kidding me?]

Back on track.

It seemed as though I had no one to turn to. “My life has been about studying others for so long, it’s as though I have neglected myself. If only there was school for THAT,” I thought to myself. But there was…..OPRAH’S LIFECLASS. Only she could put me back together.

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I knew I had to have a tough conversation with myself. I had to ask myself what I wanted. Not what other people want for me, not what I have been told I am good at, but what I am truly all about. Since the Hamburglar role was already taken, I had to think of a plan B (joke).

My truest, greatest passion in life is people. I wish nothing more for myself than to have a positive impact on people’s lives. This is why I have studied Psychology, Social work, and Education. But often, those disciplines just teach people to live in their own heads. And I can personally attest to the fact that when you open yourself up to the world, your life can be transformed. For example, experiencing Cuban culture showed me how much we over-rely on material things, and visiting the Alhambra taught me that present day architecture has nothing on the Nasrid dynasty. Traveling enriches our minds and our hearts by showing us how insignificant we really are…and it makes us kinder, braver, and wiser. And this is what I want to do for others…to open up the world for those who want to see (trademarked by Flight Centre, but I can relate to the sentiment).

Image courtesy of PBS
Havana. Image courtesy of PBS.

If I may with another quote: “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.” I suppose, I’ve arrived now. From the ivory tower of academia to a simple desk at my travel shop, and I couldn’t be happier.

So, hey you, what do you really want? Whether you are day-dreaming of experiencing magic at Disneyland or are gathering the courage to take on the highest peak of Bolivia, I want to help you get there.


Why I left a promising academic career to be a travel agent. Part 1: The Lizzie McGuire Effect


I have been trying to write this post for 2 weeks now, but just can’t seem to get it started. Thinking of how I got here makes me both laugh and cry, but as the great Kurt Vonnegut once said “I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward.” So, here we go.

Continue reading “Why I left a promising academic career to be a travel agent. Part 1: The Lizzie McGuire Effect”