When I was younger – much younger – I imagined that living a life where I traveled all the time would be the cat’s meow. Hopping on planes and traveling to faraway places seemed so cosmopolitan to me back then. I could not imagine who wouldn’t want that life.
Now that I am older – so much older – I cannot imagine enduring the life I once thought would be the cat’s meow. I have traveled enough now to know that the reality is far from what I thought it was in my uninformed youth. Years of experience with cramped planes, long layovers, missed connections, damaged and lost bags, and packed airports brought my head out of the clouds and back to the reality of pretzel snack bags with five mini-pretzels.
Not that I do not enjoy travel on occasion – I most certainly do. I just need to be home for long stretches in-between travels. Dorothy was on to something with her adage, “There’s no place like home.”
Yet, even though I know the reality of travel and my own feelings about spacing out travel, I sometimes find myself on back-to-back travels. I always marvel in retrospect that I once again scheduled such travel, but in the planning moment I convince myself that it will be a piece of cake. It is never a piece of cake.
On August 4th I embarked on a travel extravaganza that ended August 24th. It started on land and ended with one piece of lost luggage, one married daughter, and a whole lot less money in my bank account (to give you the most basic of summaries). Here is how it went:
August 4: Off to Bismarck to engage in the ND Energy Tour for Educators;
August 5: On the educator bus ending the day in Medora;
August 6: Back to Bismarck on the bus, and then home to West Fargo in the late evening;
August 7: Fly to Phoenix with the entire clan and spend the night at a hotel;
August 8: Fly to Maui with the entire clan (yes, this was during Isabelle and Julio – that story is for another day);
August 9-14: Traversed the island of Maui while marrying off a daughter;
August 15: Back to Phoenix and a night at the airport (thanks so much Hawaiian Airlines);
August 16: Back to West Fargo;
August 17: A FULL DAY AT HOME to do laundry and repack;
August 18: Fly to Syracuse with Noah and spend the night at a hotel;
August 19: Drive to Quebec to visit the grand kids and stay in Ottawa;
August 20-22: Back and forth between Ottawa and Quebec with grand kid visits in the middle;
August 23: Back to Syracuse to again spend the night in a hotel;
August 24: Fly HOME.
I must say, I felt like a gypsy who lived a life of constant wandering by the time we hit Ottawa. Not a real gypsy with fabulous hair, a fiery personality, and the ability to place curses…oh no, I was a faux gypsy – a misguided woman with unkempt hair, bags under her eyes, doing a lot of cursing because she lost her mind and thought all this here and there travel back-to-back was a good idea. It was, at the end of it all, a series of fabulous adventures, but it was exhausting. I swore, “NEVER AGAIN.” Alas, I think I’ve said that before and my credibility on this front isn’t all that great.
As for the all the ins-and-outs of my August travel, I will be giving you the details (and share photos) of the three trips – the energy tour, Maui, and Oprah and Gayle’s annual adventure – over the next couple of weeks. As is so typically true in my life, there are no simple outings free of mishaps or laughter. Heaven knows, I do not need to travel 21 days straight for that – welcome to my life right here in North Dakota. 😉
Day one thousand five hundred and eighteen of the new forty – obla di obla da