Morningside House of Friendship is home to a fascinating group of residents, says Director of Sales and Marketing Amanda Fields. She notes, “The diverse backgrounds and life experiences of our residents never cease to amaze me! They’ve done so much, learned so much and seen so much of the world, I love to hear the stories they share.” Amanda shares that one of the most interesting stories she’s heard in the senior community is that of Mrs. C, the “accidental tourist.”

On Sundays after church, Mrs. C and her husband would often take their two daughters to the airport’s observation deck to watch flights arrive and depart. They enjoyed spending time at the airport and the observation deck quickly became a weekly tradition. Little did they know that their little ritual would be the start of a grand adventure! As Mrs. C recalls, “One day while we were watching the planes we saw a sign about a free trip, so we asked about it.” Airlines in the 1970’s were desperate for passengers, as people were nervous about air travel after several highly publicized high-jacking incidents, so certain airlines offered free travel to promote the ease of flying. According to Mrs. C, the only stipulation on travel was that the family had to book and attend a free bus tour at every destination. She shares, “Hotels, food and bus trips were all free, in addition to the free airfare. The only money we spent was on souvenirs!”

When asked about the destinations her family visited using free travel, Mrs. C recalls trips to Disney in both Florida and California, beautiful trips to Ireland as well as St. Petersburg, and Hungary, where she learned that she does NOT like Hungarian goulash. The family visited Switzerland, Austria (twice) and Germany four times because she fell in love with the Christkindlesmarkt, a Christmas market that is held annually in Nuremberg, Germany. Mrs. C also has fond memories of trips to Florence and Venice, where she reports that “every day at 2 pm our ankles got wet!”

Mrs. C feels sure that her family’s trips encouraged others to fly; after each trip she would tell her friends about all the wonderful experiences she and her husband and daughters had, and the friends would, in turn, plan their own trips, although not for free. Mrs. C says that she feels lucky and blessed to have travelled so extensively, all because she asked about a free trip! She’s proud that her daughters were able to experience so much travel at young ages as well. When asked if she’d change anything or pick different destinations, she laughs and says that “another trip to Germany would be lovely!”

Morningside House of Friendship is proud of the amazing stories residents and team members share, as well as the relationships built as people share life stories. Amanda states that the senior community is stronger through diversity and life experiences, and she enjoys welcoming new residents, knowing their story will be another to remember! For more information on Morningside House of Friendship, please visit our website at

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