My youngest daughter came home from school last week with an assignment for a 500 word essay on why she is thankful at Thanksgiving; and I am sure that this assignment (in one form or another) is being handed out by thousands of teachers all over the country by the time you are reading this. She turned it in yesterday morning and as we wait to hear how she did on the essay, I thought it might not be a bad idea to do the assignment myself.
For the past six months we have all heard the doom and gloom. Gas prices went through the roof. 401k plans suddenly became 201k plans. Banks were failing. Insurance giants were failing. And yes, people slowed down their travel. The last half of 2008 is not going to go down in many books as a banner year. But there is a silver lining if you look for it. So, as we head into Thanksgiving, I offer the twelve things I am thankful for:
- I am thankful that I have a career that I love and that provides an income to provide for my family.
- I am thankful for a huge network of friends and colleagues to whom I can turn for help on any issue related to travel.
- I am thankful that Americans feel that travel is a “right” and not a luxury. I know that many will scale back, but travel will not stop.
- I am thankful for the clients that have supported me over the years and I appreciate their business.
- I am thankful that I am smart enough to know that I need to contact them and tell them I appreciate them.
- I am thankful that 2009 will user in some fantastic deals that will get the clients who are on the fence about travel, off the fence.
- I am thankful that I have forged relationships with my suppliers over the years and that now we have a real partnership for our mutual benefit.
- I am thankful that many in our industry are beginning to take notice of our fractured state and are beginning to move toward differentiating the professionals from the amateurs.
- I am thankful that ASTA has begun to re-emerge as the powerhouse representative of the travel agency community.
- I am thankful for the wonderful acceptance of TRO as THE site for travel professionals.
- I am thankful for a new administration in Washington and hopeful that some meaningful change will come about as a result.
- I am thankful for deciding to get into this circus we all call “travel” nearly 12 years ago.
There are many more of course, but the assignment called for 500 words so I will stop there. What about you? What makes you thankful in your professional life? Leave a comment and we will collate them all for a future column!
Wishing you all a wonderful, peaceful, and familial Thanksgiving!
PS–I am a few words short, so…number thirteen…I am thankful for Jerry Brown.