What's a Vacation?

I'm serious.  What's a vacation?  It's been so long since I've had one--except for a few working vacations--that I'm afraid I wouldn't recognize one.

There was that trip to Worlds of Fun last summer, after my youngest daughter's graduation.  But, really, my idea of a vacation isn't sharing a (very nice) cabin at WofF village with 8 others and spending the day following everyone, while they rode the rollercoasters and everything else that moved.  Yes, I did ride a few rides, and we did have fun, but a day and a half is not a vacation.  It's a weekend.  Okay, part of a weekend.  Not exactly a dream vacation.

When I was a little girl, a vacation was a yearly standard.  It was easier for my mom and dad, because I was the only one to drag around.  I slept in the backseat or the back of the station wagon, surrounded by books.  (You didn't think I'd be without those, did you?)  I've seen some of the most fabulous places!  Yellowstone Park, Disneyland, Pike's Peak, Mount Rushmore, the U.N., Florida Everglades, and more caverns and waterfalls than I remember.  From east coast to west, north to south, and beyond.  Most of them I remember, some I don't.  48 states, Canada, Mexico and Cuba.  When I was married and my girls were young, our family vacationed often at Silver Dollar City.  My aunt and uncle owned a home on Table Rock Lake, and for several years we visited them.  We went as a family to Savannah, Georgia, to watch my girls' dad play softball, and another trip to do the same in Battle Creek, Michigan.  Since then?  Not a whole lot, unless RWA Conferences (those working vacations) count.

Vacations have become a thing of the past.  But that doesn't mean I don't dream.  Two of my friends (both authors) and I often talk about going to Barbados.  We have a friend there, who we met in a romance writers chatroom back in 1996.  He's an author, too, and would show us THE places to go.  Fun?  Oh, yeah, worlds of fun. ;)  I suspect the biggest chunk of time would be spent lolling on the beach, digging our goes in the sand, and making sure the pina coladas the cabana boys brought us were perfect. Perfect cabana boys, of course. ;)  Isn't perfect what a dream vacation should be?  It would be for me!

There are hundreds of places I'd like to visit, new ones and already-been-there ones, too.  I'd like to go back to NYC for a third time.  And right up there vying for first place with Barbados is a rail trip to Philadelphia, Boston, and Washington, DC, to see the things I missed the first time.  That one might be more doable than Barbados, but why stop dreaming there?

Dreams are what spur us on to do the things we never thought we'd do.  Without them, life would be dull.  So I keep dreaming and wishing and hoping, and that surf along the Barbados coast feels soooooo good. :)
Photo courtesy of visitbarbados.org


Penny Rader said...

I haven't been to NYC yet, but I'd love to go and spend a bit of time there and see some shows.

So many states I haven't visited. I'd like to go to the Pacific NW and Montana and Wyoming, Maine and Vermont and more of California (I loved San Francisco when I visited it many moons ago for an RWA conference and would loved to spend more time there). And Alaska -- I've longed for years to take a cruise to Alaska. When my mom was a kid her parents took her to all 48 contiguous (is that the right word?) states Her little brother went on to visit Hawaii and Alaska while serving in the military.