Meet My Tribe -an introduction to the people that make Glamma Travels a life-changing experience.

I’m happy to start my series introducing one of the newest members of our Tribe, Lori M! Lori is a Lady in the Krewe of Athena. KOA is a social club in New Orleans that rides in their own Mardi Gras Parade. Courtney Fontenot, owner of Breezy Destinations and Travels and fellow KOA sister spoke so highly of Lori. Courtney said Lori was a blast to travel with and said she would be a perfect fit for our group travels. We trust Courtney when it comes to helping our Tribe grow, she is our Travel Agent bff.

How it went…

Lori is absolutely HILARIOUS! Lori is smart. She is an ER Technician. A line-dancing, no-nonsense, independent New Orleans girl, even though she lives in another state now. Our first travel encounter included some business class international flights. Understand, everybody isn’t doing this. You also have to understand that I literally only want you to have what you want at the best possible price. It is important to have your credit card ready to secure the price that you are comfortable with as soon as you can because airfare is very volatile. Let’s just say Lori and I had some really funny late-night conversations about flights but in the end, she was probably THE most well-rested and comfortable person in our entire group.

Having spent time with Lori in the US, Dubai, Maldives, Greece, and Bali I’ve learned some things that are SUPER inspiring to me. I learned that Lori dreamed of traveling the world and she actually went to join the US Air Force to make that dream a reality. She was 35 years old (the maximum age) to join the service and they only considered her because of her education (I told y’all, she is SMART). The day she went to speak with the recruiter was September 10, 2001. Y’all know what happened the next day, she did not serve. Lori is the actual definition of a dream delayed is NOT a dream denied. She wouldn’t actually take her 1st international trip (off the North American continent) until she was 51 years old, 16 years later, but when I tell you she is LIVING her best life, y’all. She is EVERYTHING that I created a tribe for! Lori is going everywhere, seeing everything, and not letting anything get in the way of her having experiences she couldn’t have even dreamed of a decade before. We love her! She really brings a sense of wonder and appreciation to our Tribe that was missing before she joined.

Listen, Lori is ALWAYS going to have a story or experience. My top 3 would be the time her wedding ring got stuck under her seat and they had to call an engineer to remove the seat to retrieve it. I also will probably never not laugh when I think about the time a mosquito bit her in the face and she spent an entire day doped up on Benadryl because her face had swollen like Martin Lawrence when he fought Evander Holyfield. Mind you, this was NOT funny at the time but… Only Lori. And my all-time and forever favorite Lori-story will be the time I encouraged every Tribe member to book their own flights. Her flight left on the 17th at 12:05am but NONE of us realized that meant she had to be at the airport at 9pm on the 16th!!! Pop-Pop figured it out right around 7pm on the 16th (2 hours before she had to be there, and it was a 90-minute drive). It was crazy hectic but thank goodness for Monk Bali Driver, our local host in Bali. He was able to be at the resort to pick her up within 15 minutes and got her to the airport for an on-time departure! Lori is a total adventure all by herself, and we are here for it!

Usually, Lori travels abroad with her best friend, Yvette. We LOVE Yvette also. This past trip that we took to Bali, Yvette became ill and was unable to attend. It really and truly touched my heart that Lori felt comfortable and safe traveling with our Tribe alone. This past trip was different for all of us. Glamma Travels curated an “Eat, Pray, Love” focused experience that provided opportunities for growth and healing. Everyone was allowed time and space for reflection and taught Buddhist and Hindu principles for gratitude and connection. It was in this space that I was able to see Lori in a different light. She seems somehow freer, if that’s even possible. She seems focused and determined that she is going to make all of her dreams come true and I believe she will. I don’t really have the words to explain what it feels like to watch a grown woman blossom in front of you. There is something special about being allowed to be a part of someone’s journey through life. I made memories with Lori that I will never forget and I’m so grateful that she brings me cookies and candy and medicine, I can always depend on Lori. That’s Tribe!!!

For me, the food and the people are two of the most important parts of a trip. If I go to a place that I don’t enjoy the food or can’t seem to find anything I’m comfortable consuming for a week or two, I most likely won’t return to that place. If I’m traveling with a person that doesn’t respect other cultures or they are rude or mean and don’t show appreciation for kindness in a foreign land, they can’t go with me again. Periodt. End of story. I’m not here for that, you can go play with somebody else passport.

I am saying that to explain why we don’t just open our arms to every traveler. Some people are complainers by nature, some people never tip, some people can find the negative in any situation. All these types of people drain me, and I do NOT want to be drained on a vacation. That is why my Tribe’s opinion is so important to me and yes, we talk about you before I start calling you a real Tribe member. As the Tribal Chief, I take my responsibility to provide a comfortable and enjoyable experience for all of my people. Just like you won’t find any red maga hat wearing folks in our group, you also won’t find anyone that makes life miserable for the rest of the group.

Obviously, Lori absolutely made the cut, and we are all super inspired by her-story. We love her wild abandon and zest for life. I would say Lori is fearless, but the way she runs from cats and monkeys is really crazy to watch. Like all of a sudden, Lori will take off. But even as a Black Tribe we don’t run when she runs, cause we all know it’s probably a cat. LOL! But if you need a partner to climb a waterfall, or someone to hold your hand through your fear of heights, or if you are going on a safari in the desert and you “don’t do deserts”, Lori is your girl. Brave and ready to help along any and every other Tribe member. Always willing to do anything anyone asks and quick to jump into any situation to help a fellow Tribe member.

Lori is joining the rest of our Tribe in October for our adventures in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa. You should consider joining us so that you can get to know a true Lady, hero, mentor, friend, adventurer, leader, and definitely an inspiration to never give up on your dreams.