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DREAM TRIPPING : FARAWAY PLACES SPARK READERS' TRAVEL FANTASIES.

Byline: Susanne Hopkins Daily News Travel Editor

Leyte, Mindanao, Luzon - sometimes, all it takes is the name of a place to spark a dream.

For Richard Warren, the dream of visiting the Philippines grew from his childhood in World War II when he avidly read newspaper accounts of battles in those places.

The names, says the Van Nuys resident, conjured up images of ``a rare and exotic world that one might wish to visit someday.''

A dream trip was born.

Dreams are the stuff travel is made of. Most people with the wanderlust harbor visions of someday visiting a place that has somehow, whether by name, family background, movies, books or word of mouth, captivated their imagination. Some will be fortunate enough to take that dream trip to Nepal, Alaska or Bali. Others won't - but their lives might well be enriched by being armchair travelers and reading about those places close to their hearts.

What makes a dream trip? We asked readers to tell us about the places they long to visit. The responses revealed several surprises: No one professed a desire for a wildly adventurous trip; most destinations weren't at all exotic; (Hawaii was not mentioned, except by one man who had a miserable time there; this was his nightmare trip); and many trips were planned down to the most minute detail (Stephen Russell of Glendale, for example, wants to tour the world in MiG 29 jets, a nuclear submarine, the Orient Express train and a modified Air Force 1 747).

Several writers told sad stories of dream trips that slipped away because of calamities ranging from a lost job to a lost hearing aid. But there were delightful tales, too.

Take that of Walter D. Beaumont of Los Angeles, who had planned to make his way via ship and car to Moscow, Russia, in the same car his grandparents had used in 1970, when they traveled 22,058 miles through Europe, Canada and the United States in their new Volkswagen. Beaumont wanted to re-create the trip, but lacked the funds. In Mexico to try his hand at travel writing and earn some money for the journey, his dream trip was derailed when he fell in love with an old friend and ended up getting married.

``I'm glad that I planned the trip, for it it weren't for my desire to take a stab at travel writing, I might not be typing this letter with a gold ring on my left hand,'' he wrote.

Just in case you wonder how your dream trip stacks up, here are excerpts from some of the responses to our reader survey:

M. Claire Albert, Rosamond: ``My dream trip is fast approaching. I have planned for two years to visit Alaska with my two daughters and next year, we are hoping to make it a reality. We are planning on driving up through Canada's Yukon Territory to spend a week in Anchorage and maybe one or two nights in Fairbanks.''

Patricia Billet, Lancaster: ``I am dreaming of a trip where the traveling would not be too much stress. There would be no heavy freeway traffic and rude drivers, no airline regulations or schedules, no long walks, no long lines ... This place wouldn't be too far away. It would have a lot of entertainment ... I have my wheels in motion and gas in the tank. All I need is more money in the bank ... Las Vegas, Nev., is the place I want to be.''

Sharon Cannova, Sherman Oaks: ``My `dream trip' is for my fiance and I to travel to Sicily, Italy, and visit the towns of our ancestors. My fiance's grandparents are from the town of St. Joseph and my grandparents are from Bisacquino. We will travel the countryside and stay in seaside hotels. We will eat our favorite Italian foods and drink cappuccino in each town.''

Patricia Briggs Consiglio, Canyon Country: ``My dream trip is to travel to Ireland. Sept. 26, 1939, my twin sister and I were born two months early; my mother died soon after my twin died and my father abandoned me ... I was adopted by a wonderful couple who took me in at 3 and adopted me at 9. My birth father was born and raised in Ireland, and many cousins in Ireland wonder whatever happened to that small baby and would like to meet me so they can show me my roots.''

Norman DesMarais, West Hills: ``In August of 1997, my wife and I are planning a trip back to Eastern Canada (for a wedding) ... While there, we are planning to include a special place we've always hankered to travel to. We would like to visit the Canadian Maritime Provinces: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and, if possible, Newfoundland ... We have seen some pictures of the area and it is splendid if you are at all interested in quaint little fishing villages and all the trappings: boats, lobster traps, fishing nets, local townsfolk and seascapes galore.''

Steve Goch, Winnetka: ``My dream trip is on the Royal Scotsman excursion train. It takes only 32 passengers and makes a five-day trip from Edinburgh (Scotland). You pull off on a siding each night to sleep on the train. The train goes all the way to the west coast of Scotland, stopping at castles for formal dinners and a visit to the Isle of Skye. I will have to inherit the $9,600 to go on this trip, as that's the only way we can go.''

Barbara Klivans, Chatsworth: ``My husband and I have been planning a trip to Curacao. We zeroed in on Curacao after reading that it has one of the largest reefs in the Caribbean and is both a snorkeler's and a diver's paradise due to the extremely clear water ... There are many other things to see and do on the island, such as: the old Dutch city of Willemstad with its floating bridge and colorful buildings, the Mikve Israel Synagogue, oldest Jewish temple in the Western Hemisphere, the Curacao liqueur distillery and the Amstel Brewery.''

Sherry Kramer, Tarzana: ``For some reason, unknown to me, I have always been drawn to England ... My dream trip would enable me to spend time in the Cotswolds and enjoy the picturesque countryside, maybe even stay on a working farm. What little girl hasn't dreamed of her Prince Charming taking her away to his castle to live happily ever after? So a stay in a castle - haunted, of course - would make this little girl's dream come true. And for a little adventure, a canal boat cruise in Wales. And of course, when in England, you must attend the Member's Day at Chelsea Flower Show and the tennis finals at Wimbledon.''

Mazal London, Van Nuys: ``My dream trip for many years is to travel to Canada, to see the spectacular Canadian Rockies, to visit Vancouver and Victoria, the beautiful rustic Jasper Park, Lake Louise and Emerald Lake.''

Donna May, Encino: ``It was always my dream to visit Finland and see my parents' ancestral homeland and most importantly of all, to meet the many family members that still live there ... Although no wheels have been set in motion, that trip will always be first and foremost in my mind and in my heart. Someday, I shall indeed make that trip to the land of my parents.''

Richard Metzger, Northridge: ``One place I have always wanted to visit is Washington, D.C. One place I always wanted to see is the White House itself. I would be willing to wait just so I could see the many patriotic rooms. Maybe, I would even be lucky enough to meet the president himself! It would be fun to take the National Park Service `tour mobile' to all the monuments. The Smithsonian museums would especially be exciting to see. Finally, a must-see would be Ford's theater. To tour the theater and talk about what happened there with the National Park ranger would be very exciting to me.''

Elisabeth Marie Rau, Van Nuys: ``My dream trip would be to travel through the United States, probably east to west, and make frequent stops to enjoy the way people live in the small communities that are strewn among the expansive land.''

Patricia Rieken, Encino: ``When I was 19, my mother brought home a book titled `Freighter Trips Around the World.' I looked down at the kelly green cover, listening to my mother's words as she invited me into her dream. In that instant, at home before the fireplace, I knew that someday this dream would come true. I am now in my 50s; my mother is in her 80s. I have not forgotten that dream ... I will take this journey for the two of us, my mother and me, in celebration of life, when she is gone.''

Richard Warren, Van Nuys: ``I would travel to the Philippine Islands. Keeping in mind that this is a country of more than 7,000 islands, I would love to be able to go there and then take inter-island steamers in a leisurely manner from island to island. I would not worry about time or accommodations, but travel with `the next available' transportation' ... when the spirit moved me. The cultures in the islands are so varied that it would be a day-to-day education in anthropology and ethnology.''

CAPTION(S):

5 Drawings, Photo

Drawing: (1--5--Color) no caption (Dream tripping - travel fantasies)

Jon Gerung/Daily News

Photo: Visiting Victoria, with its welcome spelled out in flowers and its domed government headquarters, would be on the itinerary for Mazal London's dream trip.

Susanne Hopkins/Daily News
COPYRIGHT 1996 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:TRAVEL
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Nov 17, 1996
Words:1599
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