The following is a guest post brought to you by Amanda Green.
There are certain things in life that are necessities – food, water, clothing, transportation, and shelter immediately come to mind. Beyond that, there are all those things that we ultimately don’t need but would still like to have. We don’t need a car, a bread maker, or a surround sound stereo. I don’t need a pearl necklace and my husband certainly doesn’t need one of those rings for men. These things are all wants, not needs.
But sometimes, gradually over time, a want turns into a need. I suppose I could bike to work and take the bus to the grocery store, but I really can’t ever see myself pulling that off. In order to get my food and make money so I can buy my other necessities, I need a car. Similarly, after years of escaping the brutal Midwestern winters for a warmer vacation locale, I simply don’t know how I could make it through months of cold, slush, and snow without a one-week respite.
With this in mind, then, it’s that time of year again: vacation planning. Every fall, as Halloween recedes into the horizon and Thanksgiving rapidly approaches, I come home from work every evening, sit down at my computer, and resume my nightly obsession – where to go on vacation this winter?
To determine a location, I started with a long list of options and gradually narrowed it down. My husband proposed a ski trip in Colorado, which I considered but ultimately eliminated. Remember what I said about needing warmth? Then I looked into some more exotic locales: Chile, Mexico, and Spain. Chile and Spain have been on my must-see list for several years now, but I decided that neither one is going to happen this winter. Chile is just too far and would use up too many of our airline miles. Spain, although warmer than a ski trip, still does not provide the kind of climate I seek. March-like weather in Barcelona is not a warm enough antidote to a Midwestern winter. Finally, I ruled out Mexico based on price – all the nice hotels were already overbooked or overpriced for the peak travel season.
So what was my final decision? After a week of back-and-forth, I decided to go somewhere domestic and low-key, yet also warm enough: California. More specifically, we are spending a few days in Los Angeles and then driving up the coast to Carmel. It’s not the hottest or most exotic location, but it should give me the break I need. Until next year.