Friday, August 15, 2014

Unplanned Vacation

"Chillaxin" in my big hat! 
On Monday I packed up some bags, got in my car and drove south for 5 hours for an impromptu vacation. It's not the vacation I had planned. In fact, at this point in time, had things gone according to plan, I would be shacked up in the Caribbean in a cottage. Life, however, has had other plans. While I haven't been much of a fan of them lately, not in the least bit, it has forced me to go where the punches take me. So when I was given the opportunity for a week away I took it. Why not?

It was really nice to not only be on an unplanned vacation but to be on vacation with no plans! That may sound odd at first,  but this vacation made me realize that more than often we go on vacations dragging along an anchor's of worth of plans. We want to maximize our time spent viewing the sights and attractions while minimizing our money spent. So of course, we create itinerary. Some of our itineraries are rock solid with scheduled naps while some of our are loose with things we are going to see this day and things we are going to eventually do that day.  

However, this planning is often the cause of tensions and frustrations that occur while on vacation. When plans go astray of course we often get frustrated, its natural.. or even worse, when plans are unknown, we can become frustrated. That frustration is sometimes taken out on poor unsuspecting waitresses who had no idea that the show you wanted to see starts in 15 minutes and she should, of course, be moving at lightening speed... But, more often then not, our frustrations are taken out on the ones we are vacationing with. That's when the bickering in arguing comes into play where we should be enjoying our vacation. We've all be there.
Sunrise over the Beach during my vacation 

So this got me thinking.Why do we go in vacations with PLANS anyways?! Vacations are our chance to get away from our structured and routined lives. So why routinize our vacation which is supposed to be the anthesis of our every day life?  If we go on our vacations with no plans there's no plans to argue about, no plans to mess up, no unknown plans... cause plans don't exist. You get up and enjoy whatever comes at you that day. If you feel like visiting the local national park, you do it. Feel like catching a show... you catch one. Don't feel like looking up something to do. Well Chillax on the beach or in your hotel room, who cares? As long as you're enjoying what you're doing and you're relaxed, then you are accomplishing the true purpose of a vacation. 

Now on my vacation I didn't have that luxury. My traveling companions had plans in mind. And of course, any discord that happened was due to something going wrong with those plans. But I did have a day in which there were no concrete plans to be had. I think that day was the best day of my unplanned vacation. I think I shall do it again.