Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Travel Fatigue

Rick went to Milan last month on assignment followed by an assignment in Paris the following week. To someone, who might, if they are lucky, will get to Paris or Milan once in their life time, it sounds exciting.

I could have gone, but stayed at home.

When I was growing up in Reading, MA with a mother who felt going two towns away put me in danger of falling off the edge of the earth, I had to laugh at myself when I was living in Switzerland in the 90s. I had been traveling on business and I was really looking forward to a couple of days at home. Doing the laundry seemed like the most wonderful thing in the world. It also meant I could stop buying clean underwear because I didn't have time to wash my clothes.

I was living in Motiers, Switzerland at the time and then I had to go to the UK on business over the weekend. Long gone were the days as a teen, I wished that I had need for a suitcase. Long gone was dreaming over maps.

Business travel is not exciting. I still remember a conference I covered in Warsaw. If you give me colored pencils I can probably recreate the rug at the Marriott because that was all I saw. Lovely rose flowers on green.

Fun travel is a bit different. We've been hither and yon the last five years including:
  • Rick fulfilled his dream to play St. Andrews.
  • Three weeks in Westport Ireland
  • I "met" Eleanor of Aquitaine.
  • We've slept in a bubble in Austria. 
  • I showed Rick where I lived as a bride in Stuttgart.
  • We stayed on a canal boat in Amsterdam. 
  • There was a whole month in my second most loved city, Edinburgh allowing us to wander around Scotland, a beautiful, beautiful country filled with great people and history.
I loved every minute of  it.

On the other hand, sleeping in the same bed for weeks at a time, being able to say yes to a dinner invitation next week knowing I would be home and having a routine is also wonderful.

Some readers may shake their heads and think I'm whinging. I'm not really. I love what I've done, where I've been.

And it doesn't mean I want to stop traveling. Elton John is playing Montreux during the summer 2019. Rick hasn't seen Vienna. There are friends I want to visit in Copenhagen.

Although I've probably spent six plus months in Paris over the years, I have family of choice there and hopefully the Seine's flood will not wash it away. There are still museums to visit and cafes to sit in. Just walking the streets pretending I'm part of the Hemingway crowd has never gone stale. And if Rick covers a conference in Stuttgart, I will want to go and walk in the gardens by the Altes Shloss and maybe feed the swans like I used to do.

Once when my daughter was a student at Mannheim University and was in the UK at the same time I was doing a distant learning in Wales we discovered we were in the same country for an overlap of a few hours. We met for lunch.
A Massachusetts friend said, "You lead such a glamorous life."

I didn't tell him our lunch was not at some quaint pub but at Burger King in Paddington Station.

But between a new puppy and love of my home, traveling less is high on my bucket list...but then a chance comes up to go to (fill in the blank) and I get my teddy bear suitcase packed and am headed for the car, train or plane.

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