MARTHA ALDERSON, MA is the author of the best-selling The Plot Whisperer. She writes novels for readers, plot books for writers, and most recently Boundless Creativity: A Spiritual Workbook for Overcoming Self-Doubt, Emotional Traps, and Other Creative Blocks for anyone looking to enrich their lives with more creativity and inspiration. Her other books are Writing Blockbuster Plots and Writing Deep Scenes, The Plot Whisperer Workbook, The Plot Whisperer Book of Writing Prompts, as well as several ebooks. Look for her latest novel Parallel Lives: A Love Story coming out summer 2020. She lives and writes in Santa Cruz. Learn more about Alderson on her website, and connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Youtube.
Beauty brand, duty bound
By James Clark
It’s been a year since Julissa Pérez found out she was cancer-free.
“There are good days, and there are bad days,” said the 31-year-old Inwood resident, who battled thyroid cancer and underwent radiation treatment.
It has been a long journey.
“The after-effects of cancer are a process too,” she noted.
Her battled inspired her to raise awareness and to seek to create a network she bills as “supportive, uplifting, and educational” for anyone fighting or affected by cancer.
On Tues., Aug. 9th at Mamajuana Café, Pérez is hosting a reception she has titled “My Beauty Mark,” named after her acceptance of her own cancer surgery scar.
While the event will feature raffles, music, hors d’oeuvre and networking, its principal focus will be hearing from cancer survivors and other speakers, including Eileen Z. Fuentes, Cancer Care Coach and Wellness Specialist. Some present are actively waging battle against the disease.
Among them are Gisela Crespo, who was first diagnosed in 1995 with Stage 1 breast cancer and went into remission. Two decades later, Crespo is now waging war against Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, which has moved into her lungs and spine.
Cancer has made itself known to even the youngest souls.
Pérez has sought to ensure that their journeys too are shared.
Myahliah Domínguez was four when she received her diagnosis of Stage 1 pilocytic astrocytoma, a brain tumor that predominantly afflicts children and young adults.
Myahliah has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments for about a year and a half.
“Their stories are powerful, and strong,” said Pérez.
During her treatment and recovery, Pérez often needed to take sick days from work. The experience made her ponder how others battling cancer are able to undergo treatment and support their families at the same time.
It is why she has aimed to raise $30,000 for individuals and families undergoing
through cancer treatment. Attendees will be asked to donate $20 per person.
Perez hopes the event will serve as an annual tradition, and ultimately, as a stepping stone for a non-profit providing support and resources to those affected by the disease.
Above all, it is her goal that “My Beauty Mark” sparks an honest dialogue that encourages everyone to speak more openly about cancer and to recognize its physical and psychological impacts.
“We are raised to not talk about these things,” said Perez. “[But] no one should have to go through this alone.”
For more information or for tickets to “My Beauty Mark,” please visit Bit.ly/MBMEvent.
Marcada de motivación
Por James Clark
Ha pasado un año desde Julissa Pérez descubrió que estaba libre de cáncer.
“Hay días buenos y días malos”, dijo la mujer de 31 años de edad residente de Inwood, que luchó contra el cáncer de tiroides y se sometió a un tratamiento de radiación.
Ha sido un largo viaje.
“Las secuelas de cáncer son un proceso también “, señaló.
Su lucha la inspiró para crear conciencia, así como una red que llama “de apoyo, inspiradora y educativa” para cualquier persona que lucha contra, o es afectada por, el cáncer.
El martes 9 de agosto en Mamajuana Café, Pérez ofrecerá una recepción que ha titulado “My Beauty Mark”, llamada por la aceptación de su propia cicatriz de la cirugía del cáncer.
Si bien el evento contará con rifas, música, entremeses y creación de redes, su enfoque principal será escuchar a sobrevivientes de cáncer y otros oradores, incluyendo a Eileen Z. Fuentes, entrenadora de tratamiento del cáncer y especialista en bienestar. Algunos de los presentes están librando activamente una batalla contra la enfermedad.
Entre ellos estaba Gisela Crespo, quien fue diagnosticada por primera vez en 1995 con cáncer de mama en etapa 1 y entró en remisión. Dos décadas después, Crespo está guerra contra la etapa 4 del cáncer de mama metastásico, que se ha trasladado a sus pulmones y la columna vertebral.
El cáncer se ha dado a conocer incluso con almas más jóvenes.
Pérez ha procurado que sus viajes también sean compartidos.
Myahliah Domínguez tenía cuatro años cuando recibió su diagnóstico de astrocitoma pilocítico en etapa 1, un tumor cerebral que afecta predominantemente a niños y adultos jóvenes.
Myahliah ha sido sometida a tratamientos de quimioterapia durante aproximadamente un año y medio.
“Sus historias son poderosas y fuertes”, dijo Pérez.
Durante su tratamiento y recuperación, Pérez a menudo necesita tomar días de enfermedad del trabajo. La experiencia le hizo reflexionar cómo otros que luchan contra el cáncer pueden someterse a tratamiento y mantener a sus familias al mismo tiempo.
Es por eso que ha tenido como objetivo recaudar $30,000 dólares para individuos y familias pasando por un tratamiento del cáncer. Se les pedirá a los asistentes donar $20 dólares por persona.
Pérez espera que el evento funcione como una tradición anual, y en última instancia, como un
trampolín para que una organización sin fines de lucro brinde apoyo y recursos a los afectados por la enfermedad.
Por encima de todo, es su objetivo que “My Beauty Mark” encienda un diálogo honesto que anime a todos a hablar más abiertamente sobre el cáncer y reconocer sus efectos físicos y psicológicos.
“Somos criados para no hablar de estas cosas”, dijo Pérez. “[Pero] nadie debería tener que pasar por esto solo”.
Para más información o entradas para “My Beauty Mark”, por favor visite Bit.ly/MBMEvent.
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The updated Coldwell Banker Richard Ellis (CBRE) April 2020 hotel report takes more into account the impact of COVID-19.
And as expected, things may get worse before they get better. So much so, CBRE says the revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels will recover to 2019 levels by 2023.
This is not to say there won’t be a jump from the record lows the hotel industry is experiencing in the near future. As a matter of fact, the outlook for the hotel industry is somewhat optimistic.
CBRE April 2020 Hotel Report
In the April 2020 report, Jamie Lane, Sr. Research Director CBRE Hotels Research, Econometric Advisors, says, “We expect challenging times ahead for the U.S. lodging industry, but believe travel and the services associated with it will once again recover and quickly outpace historical peaks once this pandemic is eradicated.”
Lane says, “Our current expectations are that as early as Q3 2020, the activity will begin to stabilize, and a recovery is expected to be underway by Q4.”
The optimism is more than welcomed, especially by small hotel operators who by the way make up 61% of the hotel properties in the U.S.
Key Findings of the CBRE April 2020 Hotel Report
As we head to the second half of 2020, the devastating impact of COVID-19 will be felt by businesses and individuals across the board. And these are some of the key findings from the CBRE report:
- GDP growth will decline by 4% in 2020, before the outbreak the outlook it was 1.9% growth
- S. RevPAR will decline by 46%, with a contraction of almost 80% in Q2
- Occupancy will decline by 36%; average daily rate (ADR) is expected to decline by 16% in 2020
- Occupancy levels are expected to bottom out at 23.3% during the second quarter
- 37% decline in U.S. revenue per available room for the year
Furthermore, there are some complex constraints that will affect the industry. This includes social distancing and limitations on group gatherings, which is a global issue. Another pressing matter is uncertainty about the financial future. The last thing consumers will do with both of these constraints in place is to travel and stay in hotels.
Even though the industry is going to take a blow, above all, luxury, upper-upscale, urban, airport, and resort property segments will be especially hit hard. The report says these segments showed a 93% decline in RevPAR for the week of March 8-14. On the other hand, the decline for midscale and economy properties was 63%.
When it comes to markets, the most severe immediate impact will take place in locations that take a high percentage of their revenue from March and April. Locations in Phoenix, West Palm Beach, Tampa, New Orleans, Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Tucson are some examples.
The April 2020 CBRE hotel report is optimistic the industry will recover rather quickly. And this is based on data from past shocks and the impact they had on market hotel demand.
The report looks at the tech bubble, 9/11, SARS, and the Great Financial Crisis (GFC). In these four scenarios, the decline was steep and the recovery period was within 6 to 12 months. However, the drop with COVID-19 is high at 46%. The past event with the highest decline was SARS at a little over 30%.
Outside of these events, the Zika outbreak in Miami took 14 to 24 months to recover.
In the case of COVID-19, the RevPAR will recover to 2019 levels by 2023. But this won’t happen before losing nearly $100 billion in rooms revenue alone by 2022 based on pre-COVID-19 forecasts. The downside scenario in the report estimates 6 to 18 months for U.S. hotel demand to recover. And 12 to 24 months for ADR and RevPAR to recover.
The recovery process will require operators to make severe reductions to employees’ hours and compensation. But the report says operators will have to take additional measures. This includes many owners shutting down completely during this period. This is because any additional revenues from operating will not be enough to cover the variable costs of keeping the property open. Similar to how hotels in seasonal locations shut down during the off-season.This the report says may lessen the impact on profitability.
The Positive Outlook
On a positive note, the report highlights the fast recovery of Chinese hotels from the March 2003 SARS outbreak. In that case by July of that year SARS was contained and the hotels did well. The hope is the same scenario will play out for COVID-19, but this will depend on finding a vaccine early.
Another positive aspect of the recovery is U.S. hotels are in a much more profitable position than past recessions. The high-profit margins the industry experienced in 2019 in the U.S. should help.