My Involvement with Come Closer: How Tourism is Shaping the Future of Nations

Come CloserA few months ago, I had the honor to meet an incredible woman named Anita Mendiratta who lives in South Africa.  We had an acquaintance in common who had suggested she reach out to me to help her with a project she was working on.  It was top secret and she explained her needs which were quite doable for me as I was working part-time and just completed a semester of graduate school.  I was instantly intrigued as I knew the topic was travel, an area close to my heart, both professionally and personally, so I said “absolutely” not knowing very much about the project.  And our relationship was born.

I started my work with her a few weeks later, when the manuscript landed in my in-box.  My role included editing and research which came quite natural to me, so the project was a pleasure, as was working with Anita, who is one of the kindest, considerate people I have ever met.  To add to her generous and lovely nature, she is a strategic advisor to CNN International in Tourism and Economic Development and lead consultant of their Task Group, as well as a resource to the World Bank and UNWTO.

Last week, the finished product, called Come Closer,  arrived at my door in a package covered with South African stamps.  Anita sent me one of the first copies, autographed, of course.  The finished product looks wonderful.  Anita has a flare for writing and a love for travel and her job, and her words read easily and roll right off the page.

Come Closer offers travel professionals a demonstration of how tourism is shaping the future of nations economically, socially, philosophically, and competitively; how people and nations are coming together through tourism in ways previously unimagined.  Anita wrote the book with the help of tourism leaders around the world in mind, as well as governments to global corporations, diplomats to business decision-makers, media to marketing authorities.
What I particularly enjoyed while reading and helping to put the finishing touches on this extremely well-written book was Anita’s fictional anecdotes sprinkled throughout the book to bring readers closer to the  people who inspire and direct industry growth.  They had me laughing and crying at the same time.

If you would like to find out more about the book, leave a comment below and I will find out how to order a copy.



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  1. I’ve been reading reviews of “Closer”, and look forward to delving in. Hadn’t realized until reading more about the book that the UN actually has a named “World Tourism Day” of September 27th. Here are some comments related:

    “As emphasized by Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General, ‘In a world struggling for peaceful coexistence, tourism can build bridges and contribute to peace. Tourism’s contributions to development also advance the cause of global solidarity. At a time of profound global economic uncertainty, tourism’s ability to generate socio-economic opportunities and help reduce the gap between rich and poor is more important than ever.'”

  2. I’m curious to read this book. We travel to Panama often and plan to move there within the year, and I’ve seen the country change dramatically over the years due to becoming the advertised “next Costa Rica.”

    Tourism always brings money to the economy, and spurs growth, but there is definitely a negative impact as well. The negatives aren’t always easy to spot, but I see them more and more each time I visit.

    I think Latin American countries in particular might be at a disadvantage because they attract those who are only looking for cheap labor, cheap beer, and cheap hotel rooms on the beach, and care nothing for the culture.

    I’m taking a short trip to Panama City at the end of the month and plan to tour a large orphanage, as well as bring supplies. Panama has given us so much, I’d like to invest back!

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