Growing up, I really only knew two types of holiday (let’s say vacation from now on, for the sake of the American-speaking vast majority of my readership): shore vacations with my mom, which consisted of days at the beach and evenings at the arcade, and Pocono vacations with my dad, which consisted of days swimming in the pond in my aunt’s backyard and evenings looking at tractors. The first time I ever did any real sight-seeing was in my senior year of high school when I got to go to Paris with the marching band (piccolo, in case you were wondering.) I guess those three more or less represent the three main genres of vacation, and to be perfectly honest, I have no favorite among the three. I love them all.
On any type of vacation, be it lounging in the sun, roughing it in the mountains, or getting to know a foreign land, these are my priorities:
- Being with people I enjoy. Nowadays, Trevor fits the bill very nicely, but I remember one of my favorite things about Pocono trips being game time with Aunt Janie after dinner. She taught me to play Spit, and we used to laugh so hard my stomach would ache.
- Not having (as much) responsibility. This has been a tricky one lately, since we usually opt for self-catering places where we still have to pack lunches and cook dinner at least some nights, and anywhere that the girls come with me diapers and discipline follow along. But having Trevor home from work is always a blessing, and being somewhere where the girls are entertained and we get a chance to chat is a huge bonus.
- Not having too many things on the agenda. I like a leisurely pace when I’m on vacation. Trevor, not so much. See next point.
- Having some things on the agenda. I’m not a planner, and if it were up to me, I’m pretty sure I would squander my whole vacation sleeping in and enjoying our accommodation and not actually seeing or doing anything. This is one of the areas in which Trevor really makes up for my weakness (and maybe, a little bit, I keep him from trying to make us visit seven or eight different tourist attractions in the same day – it’s in his blood, he can’t help it.)
I’ll leave you with some photos of what was easily my favorite vacation ever: our trip to Kyle of Lochalsh in the Highlands of Scotland, overlooking the Isle of Skye. I was 20 weeks pregnant with Pippa at the time, and it was there, in front of the fire in our little cottage, that Trevor first felt her kick. What a precious, precious time.