Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Vacation Plans

Ever since my co-workers found out I'm taking a two-week vacation, they have been plying me with questions about my plans.

"Where are you going?"

"Have you made reservations yet?"

"Are you driving or flying?"

"I hear Minnesota is nice this time of year."

You should have seen the look on some of the faces when I told them I hadn't planned to go anywhere.  At all.

"You're just...staying home?!?  That's not a real vacation.  I would never do that!"

"Don't say that too loud!  They'll call you in to work if they know you're just at home."

I know that they mean well and are really just asking out of curiosity and to pass the time of day.  But it made me think about what people in general believe a vacation should be.

Merriam-Webster defines it like this:

1: a respite or a time of respite from something : intermission
2a : a scheduled period during which activity (as of a court or school) is suspended b : a period of exemption from work granted to an employee 
3: a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation <had a restful vacation at the beach>
4: an act or an instance of vacating
After thinking about it, I decided I identify best with the first definition:  A respite or intermission from something.  Sometimes, when I am particularly frazzled by work, I see the weekends as mini vacations.

The 'traveling vacation' is way down the list at number 3!  While I do enjoy a change of scenery now and again, coming home is often a serious letdown for me.  After spending a few days or a couple of weeks enjoying myself tremendously, I come home to vacation laundry and a yard full of work and a kennel bill.  There's the hustle to get the grocery shopping done and put everything away and back in order before it's back to the daily grind.

I don't actually get away from it all.  It just waits for me to come back.

When this year's vacation time rolled around, we set it up to happen while some family we haven't seen in years will be in town.  I get to see someone I've waited a long time to see and I get to spend more time in my own little backyard sanctuary.

That sounds like a respite to me.

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