This summer, we have no grand vacation plans – no sunny beaches, no riding the waves or sun bathing for us. Instead, I’ve been trying to take mini-vacations two or three times a week, with my escape partner, the kiddo. (Sometime, if we are lucky, and the stars align just so, my husband is able to accompany us on our micro-journeys.) Sometimes, our adventures are as simple as a trip to the library for Curious George books and classic movies or AS extravagant as lunch by the lake in Bemus. The two of us get hit by wanderlust, and find ourselves whereever the wind may take us.
My kiddo seems to enjoy this idea immensely. Every day off she asks me “What are we doing today?” It might be a trip to the farmers market, it might be a walk through the neighborhood, a visit to a festival, or even just a few hours at the playground, but she jumps right in with no reservations. “I want to go to the fest-ee-bal!” She yelled a few weeks ago, as we journeyed to the Yassou Festival to enjoy the music for a while. We bought baklava sundaes, listened to the music in the grass outside the tent, and bought jingling bracelets to remember it by. (My husband was not overly pleased by the bracelets – I think the jingling was a bit too much for him.)
We take trips to the movies, adventures to the lakeside, and picnics in the park. In each of these bite-sized moments, we capture the essence of vacation: a break from reality, enjoying the minutes we have while we have them.
Our culture has made us believe we have to store up our relaxation in one week-long trip, waiting with bated breath until the moment. We can only relax and enjoy ourselves at a predetermined moment, in another, far away location. With our family’s crazy schedules and the fact that we have a preschool-age whirlwind on our hands makes this type of a vacation a little more difficult. We choose, instead, to invest in our bodies and minds a few hours at a time, and inject our vacation into spare minutes and hours between work and real life.
While it might not be a tropical climate stuffed with beaches and tourist traps, we love our little community. Exploring new wonders and old favorite stomping grounds nourishes the soul, excites the mind, and brings untold pleasure – perhaps this summer, you can take a few hours of vacation, and find your own escape.
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