Author of 'Overland' Shares Advice on Staying Connected to Partner While Traveling

Top Quote Pete Mandra, author of the new novel 'Overland' shares advice gained from traveling with his wife on a group budget group trip through Africa. End Quote
  • Chicago, IL (1888PressRelease) June 07, 2011 - During their six-week group travel tour through Africa, Pete Mandra and his wife, Jessica, directly confronted venomous snakes and angry hippos, fended off strange diseases, yearned for the simple pleasure of well-cooked cheeseburgers, and slept most nights in the wild under their canvas tent.

    However, perhaps one of the greatest challenges faced by the young couple was staying connected to one another through it all.

    "Our trip had this 'danger' element, making it unlike any other 'vacation' we had ever taken before," shares Pete Mandra, author of Overland, a humorous travel narrative based on their travel experience. "Mix in the group dynamic - we were traveling with nearly a dozen strangers for the entire six weeks - and you can see how maintaining that one-on-one intimacy became a challenge."

    According to Mandra, making sure partners carve out that essential one-on-one time for each other is crucial on any sort of travel vacation, especially one like he and Jessica took. "On any trip, it's very easy to get 'guidebook obsessed' and spend all of your time trying to cram in a lot of activity when you vacation," Mandra says. "For us, we had the added challenge of getting caught up in the group dynamic, where everyone seems compelled to spend every waking moment with one another."

    Mandra's advice? "Definitely build in some downtime on any trip you take, whether that means skipping a museum and spending an afternoon hanging out in the hotel," advises Mandra. "In our case, we stayed behind at a campsite for a few days on our own while the group went off for an excursion into the Okavango Delta. The time Jessica and I spent together allowed us to take a breath from the hurried pace of things and reflect on the special experiences we were sharing together. "

    "Though my book Overland has a lot of fun with the annoyances of traveling with strangers, as well as the dangers of traveling through Africa, I wouldn't have traded the experience for anything", Mandra adds. "We slept under star-filled skies in the middle of nowhere, navigated the hippos and crocodile of the Zambezi River in canoes, and joined an armed military convoy through a patch of land contested by rebel fighters- if that's not living life, I don't know what is!"

    Pete Mandra is the author of Overland, a humorous travel narrative ('Bill Bryson meets Generation X') chronicling his budget, six-week 'overland' tour through Africa with his wife and a truckload of strangers. To learn more about Pete and his novel, check out the Facebook page for Overland.

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