Any sentence that contains the word travel gets my attention; I immediately think vacation or home exchange, and I especially think fun! But today I’m using the word travel to address my weaknesses, er, my challenges—the aspects of travel that I need to improve upon. So I share with you my 2013 travel resolutions in hopes that by stating them here publicly perhaps I really will make some changes.
My Top 7 Travel Resolutions
3. Home exchange more, hotel less – Home exchange is in my family’s blood. We’ve enjoyed 14 home swaps in 12 years, in places as divergent as Germany and Mexico. The most home swaps we’ve completed in one year was five; last year we did two. Two is good. We love having lots of space and the price isn’t bad either! (Free!) By the way, we do stay in hotels, especially on weekend getaways. When possible we select B&Bs; we like the homey feel. As my husband recently said, “I don’t do swanky.”
4. Always include a physical activity – When we did a Cape Cod home exchange vacation my family participated in something called a Full Moon Kayak Trip. We paddled around Barnstable Harbor, Massachusetts while the moon tiptoed across the sky. I will never forget the feeling of tranquility. A Great Horned Owl hooted. A coyote howled. At that moment we were as close to nature as I can ever recall. No matter where we travel in 2013 I want to be sure to hike or bike or row.
5. Cooking Class – In 2012 when we were on a home exchange in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, I enjoyed my first vacation cooking class. It only took one to get me hooked! Not only did we learn about local cuisine, but also about Mexico’s history and culture too. Our cooking instructor was from the Guanajuato region and he sprinkled splendid stories into his lessons.
6. Travel journal – While sitting in a chic café in Paris you may think it would be impossible to forget the taste of the buttery croissant or the way the streetlamp throws its shadow across the sidewalk or even the poodle that struts by full of attitude. But we do. We do forget, unless we write it down. I began my love of travel journaling in 2000. My challenge, hence my travel resolution, is to remember to write down the name and address of the restaurant or the museum or the cathedral. Pretty basic information, I know, but it often escapes my journal.
7. Pause & Observe – This one is difficult; sitting still for longer than 5 minutes does not come naturally to me. (I was raised by not one, but two Type-A parents.) However, when I force myself to sit on a park bench and be mindful, well, I feel grounded. It’s like I’m meditating. I always exhale. On my honor, I will pause and observe when I travel.
I’d love to know your 2013 travel resolutions! Please write them in the comment box below.