Helen’s Travel Corner

Helen’s Travel Corner header image 1

About

Welcome to my little travel corner! Hi, I’m Helen Todd and this is my travel blog encouraging travelers at heart and at large to take the road less traveled.

An elephant kiss from Thailand's Elephant Nature Park

“Life is a daring adventure, or nothing.” -Helen Keller

This blog site has it origins in the need to keep family and friends filled in on my travels, of which my acceptance into a program sending me to the 2008 Beijing Olympics got my rear-end into gear!

The Snapshot

To date, my big trips have all been schemed through the school system. From studying in London, researching in Thailand to volunteering at the Beijing Olympics. Travel is what I live for and I hope to share some of my passion, tidbits and random stories on this blog. More so, I hope to plant a seed of encouragement to take the road less traveled.

Currently I reside in Queens, NY. After receiving an Integrated Marketing Communication Masters degree from Emerson College in Boston, MA, I started working for a boutique social media agency. As a director, I worked with big brands and even won a WOMMY award for one of my projects. During that time I made the leap to the Big Apple and also saw was an enormous opportunity.  In January 2010 I left the agency to launch my own company, Sociality Squared and fbadz.com, to focus on social media training with an emphasis on Facebook marketing and advertising. Before Emerson, I received a BSBA in Marketing from Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH.

I grew up at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in the Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, TN area and am always proud of my Southern roots. While I have a “real job” it hasn’t stopped me from traveling nor scheming on how to get back on the road.

Sustainable tourism, destination marketing, voluntourism, and social and emerging media in marketing interest me.

Summer of 2008 – The Beijing Olympics

The summer of 2008 I was in China for three months months supporting Press Operations for the Beijing Olympics and the Paralympic News Service (PNS) for the Paralympics. Through Emerson College and in partnership with the Communication University of China, I was selected to participate in this amazing opportunity. Over the course of the summer, I worked alongside Chinese volunteers, rubbed elbows with the international press, partied with Olympians, interviewed Paralympians, breeched Olympic security and bungee jumped off a cliff in Longqing Gorge.

Summer of 2007 – Voluntourism and Thailand

From June 12-August 22, 2007, an independent study brought me to SE Asia to write a paper on Thailand and voluntourism. As part of my research I interviewed the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s brand manager of “Amazing Thailand,” Mrs. Varnapruk. I also volunteered for a week at the Elephant Nature Park outside of Chang Mai, Thailand. Additionally I volunteered for Shane Beary’s Voluntourists-without-Borders (VWB) initiative which is leading the way in sustainable and voluntourism business models. From abroad, I still contribute to VWB as a virtual volunteer aiding with business development and marketing goals.

For the last 3 weeks of my trip in SE Asia, I joined The World by Road Expedition (TWBR) and now am a virtual volunteer for the expedition. Starting in Ho Chi Mihn City, Vietnam, we made our way through Cambodia and I ended in Laos as a crew member on this extraordinary expedition. Follow all the adventures on the TWBR website!

My Travel Timeline:

2010- Atlantic City (Travel blogger’s trip) > St. Louis (Baby Shower) > Seattle (Family) > Austin, TX (SXSW) > Boston (Friends) > San Diego and San Fransisco (Work and F8)

2009- The year of US travel:

Washington D.C. (New Year’s) > Austin, TX (SXSW Interactive) > Denver, CO (TWBR Welcome Home Party), Pigeon Forge, TN and Asheville, NC (Vacation Home) > Newport, RI (Visiting Friends) > Pheonix, AZ (Spoke at a Conference), Dallas, TX (Work and Family)> San Francisco, CA (Friends) > Stratford, CT (Family) > Philadelphia, PA (Friends) > Boston, MA (Thanksgiving) > Cincinnati, Sevierville, Chattanooga, St. Louis, D.C. (Christmas vacation)

Moved from Boston to NYC August 30, 2009

2008

April

Seattle, WA > visited family and friends for a week

July 2- Sept. 28:

China > Shanghai, Beijing for the Olympics and Paralympics

2007 – June 12 – Aug. 22:

SE Asia > Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos

2005 – Sept. 12 – Dec. 26:

London, England > studied abroad at Middlesex University

2005 – July 30 – Sept. 12:

Backpacked through Europe and also volunteered at World Youth Day in Cologne, Germany

2003 – 10 days in July:

Japan > Tokyo, Hakone, Mt. Fuji, Kyoto, Hiroshima for vacation

2002 – summer:

Toronto, Canada > Participated in World Youth Day

5 Comments

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Eli // Dec 29, 2007 at 1:34 am

    I’m checking out your site. i have to say, it’s pretty freakin sweet. i love the book section. Can’t wait for more updates!

  • 2 Timmy Wong // Jun 17, 2008 at 9:18 pm

    I’m looking forward to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing! Keep an eye out for “the fastest man in the world”, Mr. Asafa Powell.

  • 3 What does real travelling mean to you? – trourist // Feb 24, 2010 at 6:11 am

    […] to go, sleeping in hostels and eating local cuisine being part of the package. Still others like Helen Todd consider that keeping it real is all about […]

  • 4 Chloe // Sep 20, 2010 at 3:27 am

    Hi Helen, do you by any chance remember the name of the organization who hosted you in Thailand? I’m thinking of going to Chiang Mai to volunteer but I’d like to contact local organizers directly, not those who advertise in Google.

    Cheers

    Chloe

  • 5 Randy Lin // Aug 5, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Hi Helen,

    My name is Randy Lin and I have been an admirer of your travel blog.

    Anyway, I am a photographer and I’m currently working on a photography book project called the Silk Rail Road.

    In short, the Silk Rail Road is a multimedia photography book that photographs the voyagers along the Silk Road.

    Our link is:

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1315661721/the-silk-rail-road-from-astana-to-beijing

    If you find the project interesting, it would an immense help if you could feature or share our project with anyone who might be keen.

    Thank you for reading.

    Best,
    Randy Lin

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