With all the trouble in the world right now, the last thing you need is a vacation.
Or maybe it’s the thing you need most.
While the nation experienced violence, hatred and vitriol in the past week, I experienced relaxation, laughter and together-time with my family.
We were reluctant to go away in the first place. Between my work at the newspaper and my wife’s work in a nursing home, the coronavirus pandemic has been a difficult time. The expectations and standards changed day to day.
We’ve survived it physically, but it started taking its toll mentally. These are difficult times for everyone, but people’s patience is particularly thin in our two lines of work. In both cases, people just can’t accept the answer, “We don’t know, but we’re trying to find out.”
When Gov. Mike DeWine lifted the 14-day self-quarantine on out-of-state travelers, we weighed our options for our traditional out-of-state trip the first full week after the kids get out of school.
We already had our vacation time turned in and decided we should just go for it. We rapidly scheduled a week’s accommodations someplace beautiful with a beach and water, which is where our shared happy place always is. We spent a lot of time researching the local rules and regulations to make sure we could go someplace and still enjoy ourselves. Aside from some limited restaurant options and having to wear masks in some stores, we succeeded.
We succeeded in making memories. We had so much fun splashing around in pools. Do you remember the last time you played Marco Polo? Wednesday for us. It was a blast.
We had so much fun sitting around a table eating dinner together each night. In the sprint of daily life, you lose that far too often. It’s nice to hear our children tell their stories or ask for details on ours. Sharing a meal together is a great reminder of sharing a life together.
We also treasured some cut-throat games of Uno, War and Skip Bo. It’s a good reminder of the wholesome, low-cost fun you can have with your kids for half an hour at a time. The conversations seldom stayed on the games at hand, which made it all the more rewarding.
Those rewards will pay dividends when we return to civilization and our work lives on Monday.
We enjoyed a care-free life for a week where we didn’t have to worry about anyone’s prejudices. We enjoyed what made each member of our family unique.
In other words, we learned valuable skills that every one of us should be applying to our daily lives.