Posted by: Bob Fisher | May 20, 2009

“Sub Rosa” Florida: More Than Meets the Eye

Just between friends

I love playing with language; and have always loved the expression sub rosa which literally means “under the rose,” because in ancient times a rose was placed in a prominent spot at meetings in which the participants were sworn to confidence. It was a way of keeping particularly precious information just among friends, kindred spirits, or aficionados of somethingorother.

So can we keep this just among ourselves?

The “fixed notion”

Many destinations are susceptible to the general public’s tendency to apply a fixed notion to them, to view them through a superficial lens. Not exactly a stereotype, more of the “familiarity breeds complacency” school of behavioural science.

“Florida? Sure I’ve been there … done that. Good value. Easy travelling. Nice beaches. Good food. Good snowbird weather. Dear hearts and gentle people.”

And yet … as I have discovered, there is a lot of grassroots Florida yet to be discovered by a lot of visitors.

To wit … a very clever recent media campaign by VisitFlorida, which also plays with language.

They call it “Been There, Haven’t Done That” … sort of an alternative itinerary planner of intriguing, up close and personal, content-rich, and meaningful things to do in “The Sunshine State.”

And you can even send for a Been-There-Haven’t-Done-That document that looks like … folds like … a road map; a traveller-friendly alternative attractions Florida Travel Planner.

Check it out at: “Been There Haven’t Done That”

On another note

I’m sure you have a pretty good sense by now of the various new social media phenomena and how they emphasize electronic grassroots interconnectivity; and the ability of real folks to communicate with other real folks about real stuff.

What I like most about social media is its potential to not filter the travel information I have access to. I can get my hands on more raw material then ever before; and (using the media literacy skills we have all developed in the new electronic age … dontcha know) I can make up my own mind. I find stuff that works for me; and actually dialogue with people about what interests me … or what might potentially interest me.

“Well I’ll be darned. I didn’t know there was a Japanese Garden and Heritage site in Florida?”

“Yup. It’s called The Morikami Museum & Japanese Gardens.

“Well, peel me some citrus. I’m on my way.”

A few of my favourite Floridian Destinations

The Subtle Side of Daytona Beach

Polk County, Florida: Art and the Common Touch

Lee County Living: Genuine Florida

Art and the Eye of the Beholder, with Richard Boswell

The Craft of Public Relations in the Travel Business With Georgia Turner

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