thoughts on the remedies and botherations of stay-cations
Though taking a week off to stay at home and rest isn't a revolutionary idea, surely it is an inspired one. Joel and I were trying to get to Hawaii this month, but realized that we simply couldn't afford it in the capacity we wanted (I'm a bit of a primadonna and do not vacation on the cheap). However, the idea of saying goodbye to a week off as well as those gorgeous tropics was a bit more than we could handle. I suggested we just take the time off and stay the hell home. You know, read a book, water the tomatoes, etc. Not terribly exciting, but I cannot tell you how much we both looked forward to the week.
Alas, I must tell you that despite these great expectations, the week was angsty for us both. I am glad we didn't drop a ton of money on a nice hotel room when really what we needed most was just to sleep, and sleep, and sleep some more. I'm happy to not have bought airfare or a rental car or a surfing lesson in lieu of a quiet bookstore, many trips to the pub, wandering a garden, and watching the ocean.
Vacations are tricky. Joel and I are moody people. One day he woke up cranky and couldn't shake it until evening; the very next day brought a similar sourness for me. There were days where we were just completely uninspired, or preoccupied with work, or able to carry on any kind of intellectual conversation.
When people asked how the stay-cation was going, we mustered a shrug and said it was good; don't get me wrong, we were so grateful to have a life where a week off is feasible. However, despite the mehness of the week, what I didn't anticipate were the benefits post-vacation. Joel and I woke up Monday morning with energy and motivation, both heading back to work. He said everyone there seemed so tired, haggard. He was buzzing around the office with stories of his kegerator project and his research on electric cars. My coworkers also commented on how rested I seemed.
And I cannot tell you how nice it was to come back to work from time off NOT exhausted from travel, money stress, unpacking, laundry, and hangovers. Though the time was not epic or overwhelmingly fun, Joel and I are seeing our lives more clearly, with a fresh and crisp vision. We see tail lights replaced, books read, projects complete, beer drank, and plenty of sleep had. It's good. So good.