Stops Along Holiday Road

It’s not quite here but if you haven’t already, you’re probably at least in the planning stages for your summer vacation. Have you noticed how we change our vacations through the span of our life? You may be still on your great journey so let me use my life as an example of one who has already journeyed the various stages of vacationing.

I was a kid during the time that station wagons ruled the roads and roads ruled vacation travel. Our vacations typically were to places where branches from our own family tree reached. Which worked out since we became their destination on their vacations. Most summers we loaded up the family sedan and set out on a day’s drive east or west. (There were no relatives south and a day’s drive north would have taken us out of the country.) Major attractions were riding lawn mowers and shopping at department stores different from the ones at home.

The teen year vacations were pretty campy. You know- boy scout camp, baseball camp, band camp, football camp. The camp years. The locations changed but the group didn’t. Later in life these were the memories that would make you appreciate the phrase “familiarity breeds contempt.”

During the college years there were no vacations. With kids in college for a dozen years running, my parents claimed the school year to be their vacation while we would work through the summer so we could all do it again the next fall.

Adulthood finally brought the real vacations. We travelled to exotic places like Los Angeles and Boston. For us that was exotic. One was actually sunny for five days in a row and the other had people who spoke in some language that wasn’t what we were used to hearing at home. Upon the arrival of my daughter vacation spots once again resembled family gatherings. Fortunately staycations were becoming the in thing (even if we didn’t have that catchy name for them) right up until her camp years began.

There was a brief period after my daughter graduated and set out on her own that vacations became exotic again. Since I was actually working and had some discretionary income, exotic actually included locations that required air or sea travel to reach.

And that brings me to the cusp of my “golden years.” Retirement, no commitments, no worries, no work, no time clock, no shirt, no shoes, no income. Every day is a vacation. And as long as I don’t travel too far out of the city I should get to spend quite a few of them on Holiday Road.

So, plan wisely, enjoy your summer vacation, and remember… oh heck, I forgot.

That’s what I think. Really. How ‘bout you?

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