On a scale of 1 to GETMETHEHELLOUTOFHERE, I’m definitely edging towards the stereotypical me-shaped hole in the wall as I escape while manically cackling “I’m free! I’m free!”
I know I’m a grown-up (STOP SNICKERING, I AM!) and there’s a whole lot of childhood I wouldn’t want to revisit, but damn, do I miss having a real summer vacation. Or any vacation, really. When your body’s a dirty traitor and you’re sick as much as I am, vacation days just kind of sneak away before you realize they’re gone.
There’s something so cruel about looking out the window and seeing all that blue sky and sun calling me to me, and then having to turn back to Quickbooks and Excel and Outlook and real life and the knowledge that unless I somehow beat the odds and win the lottery without being struck by lightning and killed first, I’m stuck being a responsible adult.
But lord, is it tempting to get in that car every morning and just keep on driving.
I managed 23 years in this city just fine before the travel bug really hit me. Family trips to Hawaii or down the Oregon coast were nice and all, but didn’t really inspire me to set out on my own adventures. I knew there was a lot more world out there, but I figured I had plenty of time to see it. No rush.
Then one day someone moseyed on into my brain and flipped a switch, and all of a sudden I was itching to be as far from home as I could get. Forget the biological clock; my geographical clock had started ticking, and there was no hitting the snooze. Before I knew it, I had five grad school acceptance letters, a student visa and an absurdly expensive plane ticket in my hand, and one nine hour flight later I was a Canadian expat living in the UK.
Suddenly countless marvels were either on my doorstep or merely a quaint train ride away. I saw London. I saw France. I learned to say “trousers” instead of “pants.” Nutty Hubby (then Nutty Boyfriend) met me in Rome over Easter break and we traveled all over Italy feasting our eyes on stunning cities and stuffing our faces with incredible food.
Were it not for Nutty Hubby, I might have just stayed over there. But at the end of the year, I grudgingly packed my things and headed back home. The handle on my heaviest suitcase broke as I made the long trek from the Underground to the terminal at Heathrow; I think it was trying help out by sabotaging my return journey. I trudged onward to my gate nonetheless.
Still, when I got home, I realized I was happy to be back. I was surprised how much I had missed the Pacific Northwest. I greeted cedar trees like old friends, I relished living a stone’s throw from the beach. I positively reveled in having a bathroom that wasn’t literally just one big shower with a toilet in it (why is that a thing, England?!). My car welcomed me back with open doors – oh, to drive again!
That and I had a wedding to plan. Not that I was excited about that or anything.
After a long stint of unemployment, because we all know master’s degrees make you simultaneously over- and under-qualified for 99% of jobs out there, I finally rejoined the work force, details of the wedding started coming together, and I was settling nicely back into a calm and normal life in the city where I grew up.
There was just one problem. After the wedding, there’s the honeymoon. And thanks to an unwitting customer at his former workplace, Nutty Hubby came to me with an idea for ours that has set the standard for all vacations to come, and left me once again helpless at the toothy mercy of the travel bug.
Here’s a hint:
Need another clue?
Okay, one more.
Oh yeah, and this was our ride:
That’s right. Because of one fateful phone call during which a customer just happened to mention he was going on a 20-fricking-day Caribbean cruise, Nutty Hubby and I decided that sounded like pretty damn good idea, and wound up spending three weeks of pure luxury sailing in clear, blue, blissful tropical waters on the Emerald Princess. And flooding in along with those tranquil waters was the desire to NEVER GO HOME AGAIN.
I have never so seriously in my life considered trying to stow away on a boat.
And that was that. Ever since, the urge to get the hell out of Dodge creeps up on me, and creeps up on me, until we either manage to get away for a bit or my madness meter is pushed one notch higher and the whole cycle resets.
So please, dear probability, spare us the lightning and consider us for that lottery jackpot, because with every passing day it gets harder not to just leap out of this chair and into the nearest plane, train or automobile that will take me anywhere but here.
I’ve got the winning ticket in my pocket, I swear.
See more of our Caribbean getaway in my photo archives at Glass Half Delicious if you’re like me and all you wanna do is sail away, sail away, sail away.