Monday, February 12, 2018

Ten Things I Don't Like About Vacations

First of all, I love vacation!  Who doesn't?  But there are some things that go along with planning, preparing, etc. of the trip that I just don't like.  Is it just me or can you relate to some of these complaints I have?

1.  Planning an itinerary.  Especially for a vacation like our trip of a lifetime to Europe.  I'm pretty  sure that we will never visit these places again.   I get excited about the trip when I'm planning it and that's fun but I also feel worried that I haven't included a great sight to see or food to eat.   To make sure we have covered all our bases in the planning process, first we talk to everyone and anyone who has ever been to the part of the world we are traveling to.   We consider and look into any suggestions of sights we must see.  Then we consult travel books, especially the travel guides recommended by friends and family.  And then the internet has lots of information that needs to be looked at..  Hopefully, after all this, we have come up with the perfect itinerary!

2.  Booking a hotel without seeing it.  Especially when we are booking with fellow travelers and they are depending on us to find somewhere to stay.  We have crossed a couple of hotel chains off our list entirely but sometimes we get disappointed by the chains we have been happy with.   Most times we do not know what we will get until we get there.  If we know someone who has stayed where we are going and they have no complaints we will stay were they did but that rarely happens.  We trusted Rick Steves, whose travel guide we are using to plan our European vacation, when we picked our hotel in Barcelona.  My sister, Sandie, and friend, Susan, planned their trips with the help of his books and say that they were not disappointed.   I feel pretty confident about this hotel selection.  Hopefully it is one that I can recommend to anyone traveling to Spain.

3.  Waiting for the travel date to arrive.  I get so anxious to put the last of my dresses into my suitcase and get to the airport.  The last couple of days before a vacation just drag by.  It used to be worse, though, when I was working.  Retirement days do go a lot faster than work days!

4.  Packing.  Especially if I'm packing for a warm weather trip in the middle of winter.  First of all I have to hunt down the summer clothes.  Secondly, I have to try everything on to make sure things still fit after all the eating festivities of winter.  Then to decide what the weather might be like at the destination of our trip.  While I am checking the weather, I often see that it got warmer where we are going so I throw an extra pair of shorts into the suitcase.  But wait, there's a cold front coming in, throw in a pair of jeans and take out the shorts!  It goes on and on like that the last week of vacation because I don't like to over pack!   I should just solve this problem by buying a bigger suitcase and packing everything.

5.  Leaving the house feeling like we forgot something.  I run the checklist I have in my head off to Soko while we are still in the driveway.  What do we need to make sure we haven't forgotten?  Passports - check, wallet - check, phones - check.  Did we shut off the...  One time, when we were going on a road trip with the kids.   I was going over the list in my head as Soko was pulling out of the driveway.  We got down the block when I started to  panic thinking that I might have left the iron on.  I needed to go back to the house to check.  With the kids moaning in the back seat, Soko headed back.  Thank goodness, because the iron was on!

6.  Getting to the airport on time.  We spend half the day at the airport because I add two hours to our drive to the airport in case of traffic.  Then I want to be there 2 1/2 hours early and add at least another hour just in case there is a problem and delay checking in.  So usually we are at the airport about 4 hours before the flight is due to take off.  The hard part is convincing Soko that we need to leave for the airport at the crack of dawn for a flight leaving late afternoon!

7.  Finding our way around an airport.  I don't know how many times we have run around the airport trying to get to a connecting flight.   The gate is always a mile away and our first flight is always late taking off.  While on flight one, I study the last page of the In Flight Magazine where the map of the gates are and formulate a plan of how to get to the next flight.  As soon as we exit the plane, I am off and running.  Only when we are sitting in front of the connecting flight gate can I breathe again!

8.  The last day of vacation.  No matter how much I tell myself that I am still on vacation and that I have a full day left, I always have it in the back of my mind that it is the last day.  I don't like the feeling I get knowing it is the last day.  I am never ready for a vacation to end.

9.  Unpacking.   I'm usually too tired to unpack the first day back from vacation and sometimes can't get to all of it by the second day and then something comes up the third day and I am still looking at the unpacked suitcases.   And where am I going to put all the souvenirs?!  Why did I buy so much?!  I remember why once I start unpacking and looking at all the things I brought back.   Because these knick knacks are wonderful and it reminds me of the great time we had!

10. Waiting for the next vacation!

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