Posts Tagged ‘San Diego’

MPG 2012 San Diego Host: Elaine Masters
Monday, September 17th, 2012

All of our local Meet, Plan, Go! hosts have inspiring stories of their own career break travels. In the months leading up to our National Event on October 16, we will introduce them to you so you can see why they are part of our team.

Meet Our 2012 San Diego Host: Elaine Masters

Another lifetime ago, I opened the mailbox one afternoon, found an envelope and ran into the house to call and confirm that I’d won an award for a radio drama I’d produced. Then the reality set in. I had just returned to Portland, Oregon from an amazing 21 days of wandering in Thailand and was expected to be in New York City in two weeks. Turns out that I had a place to stay and frequent flier miles were even offered but I didn’t go! It was “just too much, just impossible,” I told myself and felt more responsible, more righteous for the decision.

But it wasn’t impossible. I stopped myself from going with false humility. It felt like just too much happiness! Fool that I am, I asked a friend who lived in New York to attend and pick up the award for me. My life might have taken a different turn if I’d gone and met the other recipients, the other producers and who knows who else. I turned away from the blessing and back to my safe, predictable world. I’ve regretted it ever since.

I think of it now and wonder about that momentary blip of short-sightedness in a life that’s full of long adventures. While living in Juneau, Alaska, my boyfriend came home resolved to convince me to join him on a 6 month sabbatical to wander the world. I resisted for a few days and then built my defense, made an appointment with my boss at the public radio station I was working at and stepped into possibility. Two friends agreed to job share my position and soon I was off to backpack though the world. Spending weeks driving around the English countryside in a rusted out van, camping throughout the chateau region of France, island-hopping through Greece and nearly a month combing through the wonders, waters and temples of Sri Lanka still fuels my wanderlust. At the end of the trip, I not only still had a job but because I had been gone and out of office politics, was offered a better position!

Since then I’ve managed to live modestly and find work that allows some freedom to travel, but still run into the juggling act between the desire to go, responsibility and finally just doing it.

Two years ago I was invited to join friends on a road trip through New Zealand’s South Island. I can’t say that it was on my bucket list but after poking around the internet couldn’t believe the beauty of the place. It again felt like too much! I couldn’t justify the time away from work, family, pets – the list went on.

This time, however, I stopped thinking and simply knew I had to go. It turned out that journey opened my life to new possibilities, new friendships and alliances that I could never have anticipated. They were there for the taking. The delight of long days wandering through astounding valleys (think ‘Lord of the Rings’ vistas), the fun of white water rafting, filming friends bungee jumping over canyon rivers, slipping out of the summer heat and toasting each other in an ice bar, the astounding Milford Sound and it’s staggering, primordial cliffs –only stoked my desire to explore more.

Another trip materialized a few months later! Again I couldn’t rationalize going but soon found myself teaching Flytime Yoga at 30,000 feet to a group of drowsy underwater photographers en route to Fiji. It was another unbelievable adventure – swimming with sharks, night diving, meeting other world travelers. Again my business and life were enhanced in dozens of surprising ways. The ripple effects continue to amaze me.

My usual gratitude practice centers on a day well lived; on health, friends, having a safe, quiet place to live and work that inspires me. I could never have anticipated the boon travel has given me and now that I’ve learned to say yes, new opportunities continue to sweep into this otherwise simple life. I’m still learning to open up and receive. My independent spirit is relinquishing its misguided, knotted resistance and unfolding.

When I can’t be on the road, I travel vicariously through the community of travelers that has been growing in San Diego. Meet, Plan, Go! has helped me be of greater service, to connect ever more deeply with my fellow humans and all the species we share this amazing planet with.

So go, just say Yes!

Elaine J. Masters grew up taking road trips and is a travel writer, international scuba diver, award-winning author of Drivetime Yoga and a Yoga teacher. She’s lived in many major cities (and a few smaller ones) along the west coast from Juneau, Alaska to San Diego, CA. Her podcast, The Gathering Road, airs on the WRN. Her stories and travel tips are at and

Elaine’s been mentioned on NBC New York Go Healthy, Women’s Day Magazine, San Diego Living,, Huffington Post, Meetings & Conventions Magazine & She has spoken at NATJA, SYTAR, San Diego Meeting Planners, hospitals, hospice, businesses and networking groups helping commuters, business and recreational travelers stay happy, pain free and productive. One of her favorite memories is teaching Flytime Yoga at thirty thousand feet on a flight to Fiji!

Join us on October 16, 2012 for our nationwide Meet, Plan, Go! events:

Austin | Boston | Chicago | Minneapolis | New York City

San Diego | San Francisco | Seattle | South Florida | Toronto

Meet, Plan, Go! 2012 Hosts
Monday, July 30th, 2012

Two weeks ago, we revealed which cities Meet, Plan, Go! is coming to in 2012. Now, we are excited to announce our fabulous hosts! We have many returning hosts and several new hosts. You’ll be able to get to know them more over the next two months, but here is a sneak peek at who they are. And be sure to check out their websites to see why they are excited to be hosting Meet, Plan, Go! this year.

Shelley Seale and Keith Hajovksy (new hosts) | Travel Sherpa Keith
Twitter: @shelleyseale | @SherpaKeith
Facebook: How to Travel For Free | Travel Sherpa Keith

Shelley has been traveling for 25 years and Keith has hit over 40 countries in his travels. Together, they wrote a book about traveling as close to free as possible and continue to center their lives on travel. Shelley is a professional writer who does about 50% travel writing, while Keith works as the director of a startup nonprofit organization and runs a tour company.

Lillie Marshall (returning host)
Around the World L | Teaching Traveling
Facebook:Around the World L | Teaching Traveling

After taking a year-long leave of absence to travel the world in 2009, Lillie returned to her teaching career with renewed energy and focus. Now, she is launching a movement to inspire and assist more teachers to travel, and more travelers to teach, thus transforming the educational experience of our world.

Lisa Lubin (returning host)
LL World Tour
Facebook:LL World Tour

After working in broadcast television for more than a decade, Lisa took a career break which turned into nearly 3 years traveling and working her way around the world. A three-time Emmy® Award winning television writer, producer/director, photographer and video consultant, Lisa’s writing and photography has been published by the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, Smithsonian, Encyclopedia Brittanica and American Way Magazine.

Katie Aune (new host)
Katie Going Global
Twitter: @katieaune
Facebook: Katie Going Global

A former attorney, Katie left a job in fundraising and event planning last August to travel and volunteer in all 15 countries of the former Soviet Union. She will return home in September after a 13-month career break that included running a marathon in Estonia, teaching English in Russia and Tajikistan, volunteering with the national tourism board of Armenia, living with local families in Azerbaijan, and trying her best to speak Russian on a daily basis

Sherry Ott (former host and co-founder)
Twitter: @ottsworld
Facebook: Ottsworld Travel and Life Experiences

Sherry is a Co-Founder of Meet Plan Go! and is a refugee from corporate IT who is now a long term traveler, blogger and photographer.  Her travels include hiking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal, traveling the globe house-sitting, volunteering in India and Nepal, driving 10,000 miles from London to Mongolia for the Mongol Rally and, most recently, walking 550 miles across Spain on the Camino de Santiago.

Elaine Masters (new city and new host)
Trip Wellness
Twitter: @tripwellness
Facebook: Elaine Masters Travel Wellness

Elaine is a travel writer, international scuba diver, award-winning author of Drivetime Yoga and a Yoga teacher. Her podcast, The Gathering Road, airs on the WRN and she has been mentioned in Women’s Day Magazine, San Diego Living and the Huffington Post. One of her favorite memories is teaching Flytime Yoga at 30,000 feet on a flight to Fiji!

Kristin Zibell (new host)
Take Your Big Trip
Twitter: @takeyourbigtrip
Facebook: Take Your Big Trip

In 2008, Kristin left marriage and corporate life to spend 2 years traveling to India, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Europe. Volunteering, touring, trekking, photographing and blogging along the way, she used her past professional experience to pay for her adventures by consulting between trips. She settled in San Francisco in 2010 and writes a blog to inspire others to live their travel dreams.

Lori Stone (new host)
The Joy Guild
Twitter: @thejoyguild
Facebook: Art Camp for Big Kids

After 20 years in the corporate, nonprofit and technology sectors, Lori began a research sabbatical and career break this year. She is taking time off from contract management work to explore the world around her by leading creative art retreats, traveling, writing, learning, continuing outreach as a cancer survivor-turned-advocate, building communities and – most importantly – having fun.

Jillian & Danny Tobias (new hosts)
I Should Log Off
Twitter: @ishouldlogoff
Facebook: I Should Log Off

Jillian and Danny traveled around the world for 21 months, traversing famous overland routes like Capetown to Cairo and the old silk road. Experts in budgeting and financing your dream, they have been featured by finance and business writers from The New York Times, Sun-Sentinel, and US News & World Report. In 2011, the couple started Doughhound, a budgeting website to help others achieve their financial goals.

Janice Waugh (returning host)
Solo Traveler Blog
Facebook:Solo Travel Society

Janice has enjoyed many forms of travel at different times of life…20-something travel, family travel, and career break travel. As publisher of Solo Traveler, author of The Solo Traveler’s Handbook and moderator of the Solo Travel Society on Facebook, she aims to inspire others to discover the world as they discover themselves.She has spoken at The Smithsonian on solo travel and has been quoted in many media outlets including CNN, the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, LA Times and USA Today.

Join us on October 16, 2012 for our nationwide Meet, Plan, Go! events:

Austin | Boston | Chicago | Minneapolis | New York City

San Diego | San Francisco | Seattle | South Florida | Toronto

To be the first notified when tickets go on sale this fall, sign up for our newsletter.

Career Break Guide Table of Contents

Meet Plan Go