At 85, Gordon Mitchell has no plans to settle down. A former
industrial relations manager in the manufacturing division of
Republic Steel, Mitchell decided seven years ago to see the world,
and see it he has.
date, Mitchell has visited 150-160 countries, cruised more than 450 days and
taken land trips totaling more than 160 days.
“I have four trips planned for 2004 and will be running out of
new countries to visit,” said Mitchell, who relies on Holland
America cruise lines for much of his travel. “My aim is to see places
I haven’t seen before.”
One of only 5,000 people worldwide to embark on the
company’s 96-day cruise through the southern hemisphere,
Mitchell has also taken a 1,600-mile trek via train through the
Australian Outback, enjoyed a safari in Botswan, ridden an elephant
in Thailand, above, and toured Zimbabwe’s mile-wide Victoria
In July, the globetrotter plans to head to Amsterdam for a
14-day cruise of England, Ireland, Iceland, Norway and Denmark
followed by a 10-day cruise in October up the St. Lawrence River
and down the East Coast to enjoy the fall colors.
“There are so many beautiful spots,” Mitchell said. He counts
the Taj Mahal in India, the Great Wall of China and the Terra
Cotta Warriors in Xiang, China, among his favorites so far.
Though retired, Mitchell’s interest in traveling began after
Wittenberg, when he criss-crossed the country for Republic Steel
with his wife of 56 years, Winnie.
Following her death in May
1997, Mitchell decided to spend his retirement visiting places he
once thought he and Winnie might visit together. “After losing my wife to lung cancer, I was faced with the decision
of where do I go from here,” Mitchell said.
“I don’t know how
many days I have left, and I’m trying to get in as many trips as I