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I woke up this morning, as I have every morning this week, to the pealing of bells from the campanile of Florence’s iconic cathedral complex, Santa Maria del Fiore, popularly known as the Duomo. The heart of this ancient and exquisite city, the Duomo also plays a central role in our new story tour, Buried Alive: The Secret Michelangelo Took to His Grave. I’m here to test the app one last time before we shout its existence out to the world. I'm happy to say that it's working great!
As I write this post, Team TTT&T’s Oliver Latsch is in Utah, USA, interviewing Gail Halvorsen, aka “The Candy Bomber,” aka “Uncle Wiggly Wings,” aka “The Chocolate Pilot.” He's the post-WWII US military flyer who, in 1948, came up with an ingenious idea for delivering treats to the children of Berlin, then trapped by Soviet Russia's blockade of the city. Gail's story is the inspiration for Oliver’s upcoming Time Traveler Tour to Berlin, slated for publication in 2018.
When the Soviet blockade of the western sectors of the German capital began, the city only had 36 days worth of food for its 2 million inhabitants. Coal for energy and medical supplies were running perilously low as well. Neither train nor automobile nor river barge could penetrate the Soviet sphere of influence that surrounded Berlin.
And I don't mean by watching reruns of the Flintstones.
In my last post, I mentioned that my work for Time Traveler Tours & Tales is only one of my jobs. I also work in collections at the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. The site is famous for being one of the only museums in the country that has a live paleontological excavation on site. And here's the thing:
I love paleontology...
We all know the thrill of being involved in a worthwhile project. Even better if it’s groundbreaking. Better still if you’ve got a foot in the door from the beginning.
I’m talking about my role with Time Traveler Tours and the part I’ve played in the development of our coming Story Tour to Florence:
IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF GIANTS:
MICHELANGELO, THE MEDICI & DAVID
It’s now on its way to the app stores (!) and Sarah is on her way to a much-needed vacation. So we thought it a fine time to share the serendipity that brought me to the team, first as Museum Liaison and now Community Manager.
Great news from TTT&T Head-quarters: We’ve just completed the first full build of In the Footsteps of Giants, our time-traveling tour to Renaissance Florence, and it's looking great!
As luck would have it, we seem to be launching at exactly the right time too. Who knew?
Last Tuesday, I received this gorgeous message from a young fan, one of the original pilot-testers of Beware Madame la Guillotine. She wrote:
“Sarah, have you seen Pokémon GO? Your Time Traveler Tours are the same thing, only better, because they teach cool facts and skills!”
Her message was like a magical salve. I'd been hacking for many days straight at that point and a fatigue reminiscent of my Kickstarter days had settled in. I'd also been feeling a bit hopeless -- perhaps because of the fatigue? -- in the face of the violence and intolerance that has gripped our world. These enthusiastic words immediately strengthened my resolve to harness today's popular technologies to Turn History On.