TCC ‘Destination Zoom’ Meetings to Focus on Algeria (April 17) and Brazil (May 15)

The next “Destination Zoom” meeting for TCC members is scheduled for Saturday, April 17, 2021. This month’s virtual gathering investigates Algeria, the largest country in Africa. It is a country emerging from years of being largely off limits due to a brutal civil war in the 1990s, subsequent problems of violence and kidnapping, and issues brought into focus by the Arab Spring. For those willing to overlook these obvious challenges, Algeria is considered relatively safe and once again welcomes independent travelers. It is an incredible destination where tourists remain a novelty and almost anywhere is off the beaten path.

Just a short hop from Europe, Algeria offers attractions as varied as they as they are pristine. The capital, Algiers, one of North Africa’s most charismatic cities, stunning Roman ruins, and of course the Sahara, region where Algeria offers arguably the best desert landscape on earth.

Our guide will be Said Chitour, originally a specialist tour guide with more than 30 years of experience in the field all around Algeria. In the 1990s he began working as a fixer and field producer for journalists. Said was the guide for Michael Palin when he was producing “Sahara” in 2002 and 2003 from I-n-Guezzam in the south of Algeria to Tamanrasset. Palin describes his knowledge of the tangled alleyways of the Casbah in Algiers as unsurpassed, knowing almost everyone he passes by, and a story behind almost every building. He also helped British historian Mary Beard and her crew to film the city of Timgad, for her BBC TV series “Ultimate Rome.”

Said was recently in the news:

The meeting begins at 6 p.m. GMT, which coincides with:

  • 7 p.m. “London Time” (GMT+1)
  • 2 p.m. Eastern Time (US & Canada)
  • 1 p.m. Central Time
  • 12 noon Mountain Time
  • 11 a.m. Pacific Time

For details about how to join the meeting, contact St Louis Chapter Coordinator Charles Merkel
at, telephone 1-314-644-7797.

Brazil will be the focus of our subsequent “Destination Zoom” on May 15, 2021. Most international travelers are familiar with Brazil’s famous destinations of Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Brasilia, Foz de Iguazu and the occasional Amazon Cruise. Our focus will be on places outside the normal tourist circuit such as The Pantanal, Florianopolis, Salvador Bahia, Lencois Maranhenses, and the TCC “Country” Fernando de Noronha.

Our guide for this destination zoom will be Eduardo Issa, a world traveler and documentary filmmaker from Guaratinguetá, Brazil. In 2011-2013, Eduardo and his wife Leticia completed a three-year expedition in which they drove around the edges of North and South America from Ushuaia to Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, and back again in their specially built RV. Before that he visited all the National Parks in Brazil, making a documentary for Brazilian TV.

Volunteers Needed
We are looking for members who will volunteer to help us produce more and better “Destination Zooms.”
Help IS needed in the following areas.

  1. Program development. Contacting possible speakers, writing proposals, developing programs from concepts.
  2. Production computers, management of online webinars, interviewers.
  3. Advertising and Promotion creation of promotional emails, graphic art, writing of biographical notes.
  4. Post-production preparation and editing of archived video, writing thank you notes to program presenters and reports to Centurion.

Please email Charles Merkel at if you have an interest or expertise in any of these activities

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Mailing Address:
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Tel: (888) 822-0228

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