Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Instead of Traveling, I'm Taking A Vacation?

As many regular readers know, I have been talking about a long road trip along the gulf coast for many months-at least since August of last year when I put my end of summer road trip on hold. I've even planned, and talked about the planning more than once. Driving to Corpus Christie, then to Galveston, then along the Cajun Coast of Louisiana to New Orleans and so on, until I end up in St Augustine, Florida. All in all, I've done a great deal of planning.

Only..........that's no longer the plan. Instead, I'm going to the beach. To one place on the beach (mainly). And there I will sit for two weeks at least. Gladly and happily. I'm still driving to the Texas Coast, and I will probably spend a single night in San Antonio, cruising the River Walk and checking out the Alamo (again). Other than that though, I plan to settle in with a beach view, and do as little as possible. While I may cook here and there, I plan to rely mainly on restaurants. I'll spend my time walking on the beach, reading, checking out my surroundings, nap on the beach-and probably repeat each day. As someone wrote once on another blog, I want a bar and a beach and a pool and if the bar is on the beach or in the pool, so much the better.

And yes, that is a real aircraft carrier parked on the beach!
I am the first to admit, this is probably not "traveling" as such, but a vacation, which is really not the norm for me. While my road trips usually end with a specific destination, the driving is part of the experience and many and new places are seen along the way. I went to Seattle for a few days, but on the way there I went to Arches National Park, visited Boise and Salt Lake (for the first time) and explored Washington State wine country. On the return trip, I drove east into the Idaho panhandle and mountains, followed the snake river, checkout the beauty of Montana and more-for a total of a couple weeks. That, to me is traveling-exploring mainly new places, having new experiences,  and hopefully learning a new thing or two along the way.

The San Antonio River Walk is always worth a day's visit

With all my years of living in Germany (and on the Eastern Seaboard before that) have plenty of experience in travel, from roughing it in hostels and camping, to staying at five star hotels in New York and Berlin. Put simply, I appreciate new experiences, people and places who are different than what I am used to, and the small off the road adventures that can be truly eye opening.

Sometimes though, we just need plain old down time-or at least I do. Even in retirement, and even when my stress level is extremely low. Sometimes, I just want a chance to "chill", and since I live in a land locked state, enjoy some serious open water (nope, lakes are not the same as the ocean, nope, nope, nope).

So this time, I am going to enjoy some sun, sand, seafood and beach wildlife, for a good couple weeks. I've been looking at VRBO, airbnb, and regular rentals, with an eye to avoiding Memorial Day crowds, and in the next couple of days I will make a final decision. I expect friends and family to join me (surprise!) for at least part of my stay to increase the fun level. So, either the two weeks before that holiday weekend, or the two weeks after, I'll be ensconced on the beachfront, and enjoying every minute of it. Oh sure, I'll still drive there, and appreciate the view, and since I need to stop both ways for the night, I'll be exploring either San Antonio or Austin for at least a day each way. I'm packing three bathing suits, sandals, maxi dresses for eating out, and knitting for on the porch.  

I can barely wait.

And just so that I can say I accomplished at least one thing on this "vacation:, I'm also exploring a local snowbird park or two, right on the water. While I cannot imagine leaving home for four months, if I ever were to consider doing so it would need to be on the water rather than in, say, Arizona. Because you never know. While four months may be excessive, a quick one month break, well, it just might work!


  1. Sounds like a plan! Exploring locations for one spot to stay for an extended time should be interesting if you do any of that.

  2. One of my best vacations was just finding a little room with a kitchen and just relaxing exploring for a couple of weeks. Small beach town. Sounds wonderful.

  3. Barb that sounds wonderful! There is nothing like the ocean for rest and relaxation. I would love to bottle up the sounds, smells and sights and take it home with me. Enjoy!

  4. We do that when we go to Hawaii. There is a place and time for each type of vacation and it is nice to have both. Staying in one place is definitely relaxing and it is a good way to recharge your "batteries".


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