Last Call: One MILLION Miles

Remember us mentioning in One MILLION Miles To Win that each airline in Star Alliance is giving away One MILLION Miles to mark the alliance’s 20th anniversary?

If not, hurry over there now and get your last minute entry in!

Us, we just got ours off, hopefully we didn’t miss anything and it’s accepted; and we’ll walk you through that.

First difficult part was you can’t have anyone under 18 at all, and need releases from any other person. Well, that narrowed it down pretty comprehensively. What do real photographers do, carry a stack of releases everywhere they go?

(Wonder if there’s An App For That™. If there isn’t, well there should be. One more thing to put on the list…)

So out of that, we need something that’s culturally connected and has artistic value. Hmmmmmm…

… what we decided on was a picture of the Ravana effigy burning at the Dussehra (aka Vijayadasami) celebrations in Jaipur, India:

Dussehra Celebrations, Jaipur, India


Vijayadasami, also known as Dasara , is a major Hindu festival celebrated at the end of Navratri every year. It is observed on the full moon day in the Hindu calendar month of Ashvin, which typically falls in the Gregorian months of September and October.

Vijayadasami is observed for different reasons and celebrated differently in various parts of the Indian subcontinent.In the eastern and northeastern states of India, Vijayadashami marks the end of Durga Puja, remembering goddess Durga‘s victory over the buffalo demon to help restore Dharma. In the northern, southern and western states, the festival is synonymously called Dussehra (also spelled Dasara, Dashahara). In these regions, it marks the end of “Ramlila” and remembers god Rama‘s victory over the demon Ravana, or alternatively it marks a reverence for one of the aspects of goddess Devi such as Durga or Saraswati.

Vijayadasami celebrations include processions to a river or ocean front that carry clay statues of Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha and Kartikeya, accompanied by music and chants, after which the images are immersed into the water for dissolution and a goodbye. Elsewhere, on Dasara, the towering effigies of Ravana symbolizing the evil is burnt with fireworks marking evil’s destruction. The festival also starts the preparation for one of the most important and widely celebrated Diwali, the festival of lights, which is celebrated twenty days after the Vijayadashami…

Yep, that should be an alright choice; it’s a tradition, can’t get much more connected than being squeezed in the middle of tens of thousands of evil-burning Hindus, that should do nicely.

Next, you upload a picture of yourself to be combined with that picture. So we had our support team here take pictures of us until we got one we figured went ok with the one above. The combination was a simple A/B choice, so after hemming and hawing a bit we went with choice B:

Star Alliance Mileionaire entry

Right, that’s the photo side done then.

Second hard part; getting something communicated well in a 200 character limit. That took a little fussing around, here’s the exactly 200 characters we ended up with:

Culture finds passion in religious ritual, and passion is experience that enlightens the soul. Join the Hindu faithful burning Demon King Ravana in Jaipur India for Dussehra for unforgettable passion!

Yep, think that’s not too bad a try at meeting their judging guidelines to squeeze into 200 characters … and off it goes.

The particular Star Alliance program we picked to enter was Eithiopian Airlines’ Sheba Miles; we’re a bit light on Africa travel yet, and they have the best African network plus you can redeem their miles with non-alliance partners ASKY Airlines and Malawian Airlines — which makes those miles particularly valuable to us!

So that’s that, and we’ll see how we do September 28th. If you haven’t entered yet, we strongly encourage you to compete … for any of the other 20 programs that aren’t ShebaMiles!

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I go places.

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