Dear Friends & Fellow Travelers:
My name is William Chalmers and thank you for visiting our website. Please feel free to browse around and enjoy our photos, travel insights, vital links, and maybe even our sense of humor. We of course welcome your comments. That said...
Growing up with a farm across from my front yard and another country across from my backyard, you could say that I've always had an international perspective. Okay, so I was only looking across Lake Saint Claire at the United States--but it was really another country, as all us fellow Canadians know!
From there I went on to saving stamps and coins. Where the heck is that postcard from? Who is that guy with the funny hat on that coin? In school I was passionate learning about the famous explorers during the Age of Discovery. My favorite movies were all travel-related: The Sheltering Sky, Out of Africa and The Man Who Would Be King, to the Indiana Jones series. It simply has never stopped for me and I've been living and traveling around the globe ever since--captivated, fascinated and intrigued, by all I've been blessed and lucky enough to see and do, and for all the people I've met along the way. Conversations fill my mind. Images overwhelm me at times. My own personal Big Book of Life (a listing of all the things I should see and do before I depart this physical world) is, instead of getting shorter with all my travels, paradoxically, getting longer the more I travel!? Some wise man once said: that the more you learn the less you know...indeed.
I consider myself a North American; being neither simply just a Canadian, a Mexican, or a United Statesian, but, all of them at the same time--a Newlander if you will.
For a period of time all my friends worked for airlines, Pan Am especially (Jezz I miss that airline...RIP Pan Am), because they had so-called Buddy Passes in which I could circle the globe for a nominal fee with my buddy du jour--usually in seat 1A on a mighty blue and white 747 I might add! Having the good fortune of being educated in three countries: Canada, United States, and England, I really consider myself a citizen of the world. Yet, I'm having the greatest of difficulties applying for a passport for the Global Village. Mother Earth, it seems, doesn't have any bureaucrats and immigration is impossible.
In 1989, I was involved in a travel adventure like no other before it--or since! It was truly a mad, madcap wacky race around-the-world on public transportation. To make a long and sordid story short, my partner and I won that race, traveling more than 40,000 miles in just 17 days! I always wanted to participate in that type of competition again, but alas, no one had ever been able to put anything like it together ever again.
That was until we finally started planning for The Global Scavenger Hunt™ in the summer of 2000. We eventually did with our first event, then called GreatEscape2002: The Global Scavenger Hunt in the spring of 2002. (We had a GreatEscape2001 planned for October 2001, but that was postponed after 9/11--great timing, eh!)
The Global Scavenger Hunt™ idea came to me divinely in 1999 while trekking in Nepal (Annapurna Circuit). It seemed so obvious when that little light bulb went off in my head. Clearly, I had the experience to do it, indeed still a passion for adventerous and culturally-oriented travel, and I certainly had learned about all the pitfalls from participating in a previous race around-the-world event. Indeed, it was oh so obvious that I should be doing this for you. That on top of mixing my other real passion for helping others help themselves with our Foundation's work. What more could I ask for?
So, here we are...and what we deliver to all the travelers of our, now a decade along, GreatEscape2012: The Global Scavenger Hunt, is to literally, take you on A Blind Date With The World™ to sweetly exotic destinations around the world that are truly sacred, unique, and wonderful. We want to create for you an opportunity to interact with people from different cultures with histories. Indeed, The Global Scavenger Hunt is all about your cultural immersion. You will not only have more fun than you thought possible on an around the world travel adventure, but, you will also learn things about the world, and yourself, that you never imagined along the way. The event will help you refill your memory banks and replenish your soul at the same time; with sunrises, sunsets, markets, natural beauty, truly WOW! world-class sights, exotic festivals, along with helping others and meeting engaging people. It is our hope that when the event is over, you will understand how connected we all are even more than you know now, and how much alike we all truly are, and of course, how big and beautiful this world really is.
As an active GreatEscape2012 participant, you will do and learn things not by passively reading a travel guide, following a tour guide's canned briefings, perusing a glossy travel magazine, being herded from site to site, or being an armchair traveler watching travel shows on cable TV--you will be an active participant in the world's special party of life. Indeed, we want our independent travelers to want to experience the world up close and oh so very personal. The experience we are planning for you and will put you through for three weeks, will be forever etched on your memory. You'll be able to relive these memories with your children, your grandchildren, your family and friends. You may even become famous or become The Worlds Greatest Travelers™!
First and foremost, we will personally take care of you and offer you the most seamless, hassle-free, carefree, worry-free, and safe adventure-of-a-lifetime. For three weeks your life will be transformed, leaving the daily grind behind and taking on an entirely different dimension in places you have only dreamed of going. You will be a safe and happy fish-out-of-water from your daily routine, learning to trust strangers in strange lands. We promise that you will never, ever, travel the same way again!
Of course we feel that we ought to be giving something back to the world that allows us the privileged few of us who can experience such wonderful, beautiful, and fascinating sights. And so, aside from taking you on The Global Scavenger Hunt travel adventure-of-a-lifetime, we hope to help you raise both consciousnesses and significant sums for our GreatEscape Foundation's noble causes and worthy efforts of co-ed elementary school building, and equally empowering micro-loans. We trust that you will share in our enthusiasm.
So come and join us! The Global Scavenger Hunt has become an annual international phenomenon, and the first ever international competition designed for real travelers to test their real skills. Please know that we will always keep our promises to you and to our most fundamental and cherished philosophies--having fun and doing good.
Thank you for your time. As always, I welcome your comments.
Please feel free to write me anytime at: eventdirector [at] globalscavengerhunt.com
William D. Chalmers
The Global Scavenger Hunt™