So my wife Barbara and I are going on vacation soon.
I’m not a huge fan of vacations. Possibly it’s because I’ve worked out of the house for the last 22 years, so with no commute, few meetings and no office politics, there’s a lot less to take a vacation from.
I don’t mind the kind of vacation where you drive somewhere that you don’t have to name, like “down to the shore” or “to the mountains.” The only limit to what you can take with you is what fits in the car, and you’re in one place for a week so you can get settled, and it’s probably the same place you always go so everything is familiar, and it’s still America so you don’t have to worry about people talking about stupid Americans behind your back, or cursing you out in some secret code like French.
In other words, it’s like being at home, only with different restaurants.
I’m sort of okay with a vacation where you go to a resort in some foreign country so you can sit on a beach which is similar to the beach you would be sitting at if you had just driven “down to the shore,” except for the ladies offering to braid your hair. Also, I really don’t enjoy beaches that much anyway because of, you know, all the sand, so I usually sit by the pool which I could do at the pool in my community except that nobody would bring me piña coladas there, at least I don’t think so, but I’m not sure, since we’ve lived in our community through three summers now and I have not been to the pool even once (except for the annual “Socialize With Your Neighbors, Damn It” barbecue) because, when it comes to sitting by a pool on a hot summer day, I’d really rather be in my air conditioned house.
Of course, the pool at home isn’t in an exotic locale with palm trees and foreign people and large, scary-looking iguanas walking around. And if you stay at home you don’t get to check a place off on the mental world map you have where you keep track of everywhere you’ve been with little mental flags. Except if you’ve just gone to resorts, all you know about many of those places is what you saw out of windows: the cab windows going to and from the airport and the bus windows during that excursion you went on to go snorkeling on the other side of the island. And that’s really just as well; meeting a bunch of poor people can take all the fun out of a vacation.
Anyway, at least those kind of vacations are a little relaxing for the first few days before I start thinking about all the work that’s been building up that I’ll have to deal with when I get home. To avoid that, I usually bring a laptop so I can take care of that work while I’m on vacation.
Another problem I have with vacations is the cost. I find it difficult to justify spending so much money on just a week or two. For what it’s costing us, I could literally buy a new car, albeit not one I’d actually want to drive. I just can’t see how that makes sense. I’d rather spend the money on a major large screen Dolby Surround Sound media room set-up that we could enjoy every day instead of a lot of very scenic photographs that Barb will post on Facebook, and people will feel obligated to comment on, and that we’ll never look at again.
Oh, and we’ll have our memories. I almost forgot about that.
Anyway, we’re going to exotic and mysterious Western Canada, staying in a different hotel every few nights, and being real “touristas,” or whatever the word for “tourists” is in Canada.
Everything we need to pack is going to have to fit into two suitcases along with a laptop, a Kindle, an iPad and two iPhones, not to mention all their chargers, because we really want to get away from it all. We’re also wondering if we should get Canadian currency before we go so we can tip people with whatever they call money in Canada, and worrying whether, under pressure, we’ll be able to pronounce “Banff” without sounding ridiculous or spitting on the person we’re talking to.
See you soon, eh.