OK, the Academy Awards are over. I watched about half of it, flipping back and forth between the Oscars and The Amazing Race (remember, I’m doing Competitours in June). I enjoyed the sparring between co hosts  Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin a lot. They work well together, in my opinion.

Over the course of 2009 and early 2010, I made an attempt to see most of the contenders. You can see a couple of my reviews here., although I did not review all of the movies I saw.

Did The Hurt Locker deserve to win Best Picture, etc?  While I liked the movie a lot, I didn’t think that is was worthy of best picture, although I do believe Kathryn Bigelow deserved best director.  I loved the movie-and the title made perfect sense, and the emotions evoked by the characters was riveting,  but for Best Picture, I’m thinking Avatar.

Was Jeff Bridges the Best Actor for Crazy Heart? Dunno-haven’t seen it yet, but likely. The trailer makes it look like he deserved to win. However, A Single Man’s Colin Firth had me from the start. OMG-he swallowed that character completely.

Sandra Bullock-best actress for The Blind Side.  Glad she won, love the gal.   We could probably be BFF’s.  However, (more…)

Passport? Check.    Laptop? Check.    Video- camera? Check.  Travelling companion with a quick wit and adventurous spirit?  Priceless!

Have I piqued your interest? Are you wondering “what’s she planning this time?????”

This time, I am going somewhere in Europe (we won’t know our destination until we get there). Upon landing, it’s game on.

No, it’s not The Amazing Race, although National Geographic Traveler dubbed Competitours  “The Amazing Race for Regular People”.   That’s right, anybody with a sense of adventure, a couple grand $$ and a couple of weeks off can participate.  There are no auditions, no eliminations, and much less drama.

Competitours is the brainchild of Steve Belkin (to read more about him, click here). Basically, his concept for this breakthrough travel experience came from his participation in The Global Scavenger Hunt encompassing 23 days, 4 continents and 10 countries.  “It was a once in a lifetime opportunity”, recalls Belkin, “but only if you have the time and money.”

Enter Competitours. For 10 days, 17 teams of 2 will travel through several European countries using only local transportation, completing a number of daily challenges while videotaping their experiences.  Like Amazing Race, the challenges and destinations are unknown prior to the night before. Unlike the A. R, the last team in is not the loser. Nope. Teams are scored at the end of the day by how well they captured the spirit of the challenge on video.

photo by keeweechic

OK, so how’d she come up with this gig, you ask.  Well, now that I am the European Travel editor over at BellaOnline, I get lots of requests from tourism boards and companies wanting some free publicity.  Sorry, no can do. That’s against our ethics.  However, I was intrigued by (more…)