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Does anybody else think that nature and man have taken a toll on their travel plans recently? OK, granted the desire of travelers to see the world is incredibly minute compared with the needs of people to have shelter and water and make a living. Let's just get that out of the way. Setting that aside, it seems dream vacations to some of our favorite destinations are beginning to look like nightmares.

Take Key West. Beautiful, scenic southernmost point. Today, tar balls washed ashore. Nashville, floods. Chile, earthquake. Puerto Rico, same. Peru, mudslides (they closed Macchu Picchu). Mexico, horrible violence. Greece, bankruptcy. Iceland, bankruptcy, then volcanic ash. Ditto on ash for Scotland and the UK - although a friend just flew back from London and had no problems coming or going. Haiti - not a typical vacation destination, but I wonder how neighboring Dominican Republic is doing.

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Depending on how the oil spill responds to weather and other factors, it has huge consequences for tourism along the Gulf coast, from Panama City to New Orleans. (So far, so good say many hotel operators and tourism officials along the coast who are afraid of losing business in the upcoming heavy travel season.)

And the year is only 138 days old. Still, the world is a big place - so even with these disasters there are thousands of other places to go. Let's just hope that oil spill doesn't reach any currents that would bring it to the mid-Atlantic. Experts say the possibility is very tiny. But so are those tar balls.

In this May 6, 2010 file photo, oil from the leaking Deep Horizon oil rig is seen swirling through the currents in the Gulf of Mexico.

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