Hello there. You most likely don’t know me. I’m Michael Demmons and I am a traveler and a travel blogger based in Atlanta, Georgia. I write at a blog called The Round The World Guys. It’s a place where my husband and I talk about our travels and offer tips & tricks about how you can maximize the value you get out of your vacations.
Well, it will be anyway. It’s only a couple months old and doing quite well so far. We just hired a tech-type person to design us a fancy, user-friendly layout that will evolve and get better over time.
A bit about me. I’m in my late 40s and have been traveling to various places around the world now for about 15 years. I’ve been to over 40 countries and don’t intend to stop till I see them all. I’ve been on every continent except Antarctica, which I’ll remedy in 2019. Travel keeps me sane and grounded and makes me realize how lucky I was to be born in where I was. I mostly travel with my husband, but we can’t travel together much right now because we have a 14.5 year old Labrador Retriever who pretty much needs constant attention. That’s old for a Lab, if you didn’t know. Really old.
Why blog here? To be honest, it’s because I asked John if I could check in once in awhile. A travel blogger might not seem to be a good fit for a blog that’s mostly a discussion about politics, but politics is a big factor in travel. While my first interest is travel nowadays, my second interest has always been politics. I don’t get the chance to talk publicly about politics much anymore. I gave up blogging about that years ago. That said, I thought I could offer a perspective on U.S. politics and how it is likely to affect travel both to the U.S. and around the world for Americans and others. So, as those topics come up, I’ll write about them here as they really don’t fit well at our site.
My next trip is in February, when I will be traveling to Iran for a couple weeks. Iran is a great lesson in how politics affects travel. People who travel a lot necessarily learn about the places they’re going. If you listen to the news here or look at the Department of State’s page on Iran, it looks like a festering hellhole that no sane person would ever travel to. But that’s not the reality. Iran is actually one of the safest places in the world for travelers, the people are friendly, and the food is delicious. Sure, there are things you simply can’t do there – like photograph government buildings. But face it, doing that here nowadays can get you a bit of side-eye from the authorities, too.
The politics here in the U.S. also affects travelers from other countries. I am a Canadian, but I live here. U.S. policy is often mirrored by its allies and Canada is no exception. Because of this, as a Canadian, I will be officially treated exactly the same as an American while I am there, meaning the visa process is strict and I need a guide the entire time. That means the cost increases from just a few hundred dollars to a couple thousand.
So that’s the type of thing I will write about here. I expect to maybe write once a month or so. Unless something weird happens and there’s room for more. If there’s anything you ever wanted to know about travel in general or the politics of it, I’d be interested in having that discussion.
In the mean time, Go Falcons!