Saturday August 30th ~ Taking the train from York to Ipswich, England
Sometimes traveling gets old. There I’ve said it…
Have we been having an incredible, amazing journey? You bet we have! I will forever be grateful for this time away together. We have passed through so many countries as we have traveled around the world, seen natural beauty that left us breathless, checked off UNESCO site after site, and visited more churches, Cathedrals, and museums than I can count.
The small amount of clothing that we brought with us that all fits inside carry-on luggage is getting worn, stained and in some cases, thread bare. And anything that is still decent, might as well be worn out because after wearing the same things over and over again, I am quite tired of it.
I’m ready to be home, but not really. We still have a month and a half before we will return to California. And I am looking forward to several things ahead, specifically:
- Transatlantic Cruise with stops in the Faroe Islands and Iceland
- Seeing Boston for the 1st time
- The fall foliage of New England
- Visiting family and friends as we drive across the USA
- Seeing Mt. Rushmore
I am learning quite a bit about myself and my traveling preferences on this journey. Some of the experiences will help us plan better on our future trips. A few things I will be taking into consideration for next year will include:
- Staying in one place for a longer period of time. Probably renting again through Airbnb or similar.
- Going home more often in-between specific destinations so I can change out my wardrobe, see friends and family and simply have some “off” time.
- Seeing more of the USA, specifically the National Parks.
- Planning a bit more. This time we left much of our time open, which had pros and cons attached to it.
- Traveling by motor home now holds great interest to us and we will be investigating purchasing a small used one when we get home.
Of course these ideas are open to change or reinterpretation over time, as our moods change, or after having some rest at home I may be charged and ready to take off indefinitely again – only time will tell. That’s the beauty of being retired with little possessions or responsibilities, and the freedom to make choices based on whim or whatever new travel opportunity passes our way.
What has been the hardest part of being on the road for this long? At the top of the list has been missing friends and family, but a few others surprised me…
- Knowing where to get things done, i.e. where to get my hair cut and colored or get a mani/pedi. (I know, my vanity has no bounds, but trust me these things matter to most women).
- Having easy access to a chiropractor. Both of us are used to getting our back adjusted whenever it gets to bothering us, but neither one wanted to try a random doctor on the road.
- As I alluded to before, getting soooo tired of my limited choice in clothing and shoes.
- Shopping at Trader Joe’s. How we take for granted buying healthy food items. We have found it more challenging than we thought it would be. And along that same thought:
- Eating at our favorite restaurants that we know are “safe” for Tim’s allergies. It takes time, some research, and too often trial and error to find places he can eat without getting sick. Often that means him choosing dishes that are bland, plain and unimaginative simply trying to not get a reaction.
- Dealing with laundry while on the road. We have had good luck in finding local laundromats, and they usually offer a wash and fold service, but it is still not as convenient as having a washer and dryer at home where you can throw in a load at any time, day or night.
- Cooking our favorite “home-cooked” meals. Although we have had a kitchen at several places, that does not mean we have had a full supply of spices, fresh herbs and other seasonings. It would simple not make sense to stock up on these items for a short stay.
- The weather! We are so blessed with wonderful sunshine in Southern California, and we have missed it.
- Our nice comfortable bed.
- Tim misses riding “his” bike.
- Routine. It is nice to be in the familiar areas, where things are known.
- Driving a car and the convenience of having more control as to where and when you go somewhere. At home it is so easy to simply jump in the car and go. Although public transportation is great in most foreign cities, it still takes some learning, and does not quite compare with the freedom of a car.
Gratitude Moment: Today I am grateful (although this post may not sound like it) for the freedom we have to go where ever the opportunity aligns with our interest. The world is a great big amazing place with wonders to see, countries to explore and cities to fall in love with. Somehow I think that before long I will get my travel mojo back firmly in place and be singing the praises of our next fabulous stop-over.