Why Zombies Were A No-Show At TBEX 2011 (Also, Some Favorite People And Places In Vancouver)

Zombies usually popup all over the world. That’s why I was surprised they didn’t show up at TBEX 2011 last week.

I mean, they had every reason to make an appearance– such a great event to completely foul up… But then I thought about it, and realized there were many reasons why the zombies stayed away from TBEX altogether.

1. Simon was here.

Because, well, if Simon says something about it, then it’s just the way it’s gotta be.

Simon is a WordPress back-end ninja, world traveler, and certifiable zombie exterminator. He and Erin blog over at Never Ending Voyage. (As a side note, I have seen Simon and Erin in 3 different countries in the last 5 months!)

photo: LL World Tour

2. A (cough) Lawyer was here.

Zombies hate getting sued, so having a lawyer, especially one that looks like this, keeps them at bay…

Really though, Michael was someone who always made things fun. His sense of humor and wit were something to behold. You can see it for yourself on Go See Write.

photo: LL World Tour

3. Jenny was here.

Have you been asking yourself “Where is Jenny?

Well, we found her in Vancouver! It was great hanging around such a fun, photogenic girl, who just posted on her comeback and her upcoming TV appearance.

Oh, and zombies are afraid of Jenny’s mad skateboarding skills, so they stay far, far away.

photo: LL World Tour

4. Benny was here.

Well, psssh….. this Irish polyglot scares zombies away by the dozens.

Now, he’s off scaring the zombies out of Turkish.

photo: LL World Tour

5. The Australians were here.

You know, apparently the Australians are taking over British Colombia so the zombies have no room to infiltrate. My roommates turned out to be Australian, the waitresses in the hostel were Australian, a number of hockey fans were Australian…

Oh, and then there’s Marc from Marc Passion Travel. A traveling Australian himself, I heard that if you ask real nicely, he might send you your own travel kit with a safari hat and matching sunglasses…

photo: LL World Tour

6. Lisa Lubin was here.

Who is LL World Tour who keeps getting credit for all these photos? It’s Lisa Lubin!

Let me tell you something: this woman has some skill with a camera. After doing a stellar workshop on video, she broke out her lens at one of the parties and took some magazine-quality shots. Be sure to check out her hand-picked TBEX collection on Facebook.

Zombies really hate being snap-shot, so they stay away from Lisa and her video and photo ninja moves.

7. Diamond PR and TripAdvisor were here.

Diamond PR was tabling the whole weekend AND threw a great “Men of TBEX” party on Saturday. I enjoyed meeting some of the folks from Diamond as they seem really friendly. They extend even all the way to my home state of Florida!

Also on Saturday night was a party put on by TripAdvisor and it was stellar. There was an open bar, the place was packed, and pictures were being taken of some ridiculously good looking people (one which you will see towards the end of this post…)

No zombies were allowed inside these parties.

8. AM Resorts took us on a boat.

A real highlight of the trip was the boat tour around Vancouver on Sunday night. All of us piled into a 3 story boat, filled with an open bar, food, and drinks (Hey WDS, did you get that? 🙂 ). I had seen a lot of the Vancouver scenery from the road, but from the boat, it was really awesome, and there were a ton of fun peeps to hang out with.

photo: LL World Tour

Something so baller can’t possibly have any zombies. Way to go, AMResorts.

9. The Bike Tour

On Friday morning, I and about 8 other people went on a bike tour of downtown Vancouver. If you ever make it to Vancouver, I HIGHLY recommend a bike tour as it will give you a great feel for the downtown area. Vancouver itself has it’s very own bike path (quite apart from the pedestrian path) and it goes all the way around downtown Vancouver. Bikers can enjoy a great day ride and see the perimeter of the city while enjoying the fresh cool air of Canada.

Zombies think bikes look like scary machines and blush when blonde female tour guides smile at them, so all of us on the bike ride were perfectly safe.

10. Stanley Park

Our tour took us around the perimeter of Stanley Park, one of the largest city parks in North America. The smell of green trees and fresh air with the view of the surrounding waterways made it a really great ride.

Also, they had some totem polls which acted like scarecrows for any zombies that may have been in the area.

11. Granville Island Market

If you are going to eat in downtown Vancouver, definitely head over to Granville Island. There, you will find a market full of tasty food of all kinds- fresh fruit, fresh sandwiches, fresh fish, fresh everything! It is so delectable that the zombies are ashamed of their own appetites and stay away.

12. SameSun Hostel

Tell you what, I am really glad to have stayed in SameSun Vancouver this time around. It is probably the best whole-package hostel I’ve stayed in in North America. The hostel had breakfast every morning, free wi-fi, a bar, and was strategically divided into sleeping quarters so that everything (inside) was quiet when you wanted to go to bed. With a prime location downtown and a discounted rate for being a TBEX blogger, I don’t think I’ll ever visit Vancouver again for this cheap. It was stellar.

The doors to the rooms had really good locks and for the first door there was a password required… As everyone knows, zombies have real trouble with passwords and gave up their attempts on SameSun many years ago.

13. The Canucks didn’t lose the cup until Game 7.

I left Vancouver on Tuesday after TBEX was over. On Wednesday, the Canucks lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals to Boston. Riots ensued:

photo: AP

Obviously, the zombies were angry for not terrorizing TBEX so they decided to all come out of hiding after the game on Wednesday. (One TBEX-er found himself right in the middle of the action and posted some thrilling exclusive footage on his blog. Check it out.)

14. Jodi was here.

Tell you what, Jodi is one of the sweetest people I’ve met in a long time… Is there anyone that does not just love her?

A world traveler, writer, and digital nomad who can do social media updates in the twinkling of an eye… One hug from her and a zombie is suddenly transformed into a happy man.

Jodi writes over at Legal Nomads.

What About The Sessions, Workshops, Speakers, And The Industry?

Honestly, the didactic and large-group times of TBEX weren’t the highlight of the weekend for me. I didn’t pay very good attention and didn’t take very good notes either, but I’ll admit there definitely were some gems to be found. I refer to Amanda’s really good compendium of thoughts on what she learned from TBEX.

For some discussion about larger considerations and development of travel blogging as a whole, have a look at Michael’s red hot post on TBEX and Professionalism.


I think the presence of really cool people and great surroundings made for a zombie-free experience. Basically, the zombies realized they had no chance and decided to avoid TBEX 2011 altogether.

It was awesome to meet and hang out with so many awesome people this year. Thanks to all who made TBEX possible, and safe travels!

Published June 20, 2011

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  • I must have done something right if I was moved out of the lawyer category and into my very own! Thanks for the kind words – was great to get to know you in Vancouver. 

    • Good times, Jodi! Hope we see each other again soon.

  • Well, I’m glad we did such a good job of keeping the zombies away! I’ll admit I was really worried…

  • Well, I’m glad we did such a good job of keeping the zombies away! I’ll admit I was really worried…

    • Amanda- I didn’t include this in the post, but I actually had to beat one up in the alley on Friday night.

  • Thanks for the shout out and great to hang out with you for the third time! What country will be next? I agree that the highlights of TBEX were the people and the awesome parties.

    • See ya’ll! Best with the new adventures / lands / languages you have coming up.

  • Pretty much any place that Simon is going to be at (especially shirtless and in the DJ booth) is going to be hopping.  Color me a great fan of your list here.  Thanks!

    • Haha! I forgot about those DJs that first night… Good times!

  • Cute! Different way of seeing the conference. I’m surprised we didn’t meet – I was on the AM Resorts Cruise too. What a great way to see the city. Love Vancouver. 

    • The cruise was a great time… are you sure we didn’t meet, Natalie? 🙂

  • Ha! Testing the skills is a good idea… In fact, I think Simon teaches a seminar on how to assemble one’s own zombie survival kit… 😉

  • Thanks for the shout-out. Glad my ninja moves and mad skillz impressed you. I’m impressed by this fun post! 

    • Great to meet you Lisa… Best with LL Media!

  • Pingback: It’s All About the People: Travel Bloggers We Met At TBEX()

  • Haha… Did you have to break out your Zombie Survival Kit? 🙂