Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Taking A True Vacation

Vacations are a break from the doing the same thing each day. Not just a break from the tasks at hand, but a time to unload the thoughts, stresses, worries of everyday life , and work, and let your brain rattle around unmolested.  

That is why we  need to vacation.   It has to do with emptying all that stuff that has been accumulating in our heads for the past year that has been gumming up the works.  It is a therapy.  What could be better than to empty ones head than by leaving your everyday life behind, not looking back, and concentrating solely on hiking shoes, paddle boards, feeling good,  fried clams, sunscreen, and vegetating so deeply you will actually take root in  an Adirondack chair.

Nothing.  Nothing could be better.  

A girl blends into the rocks as she watches the sunrise.  A great,
and simple, activity requiring nothing more than the willingness
to get out of bed.
©2012 WJ Hersee
Now, vacations are not just respite from work.  They are a walk away from anything one does all the time that consumes them.  Work is a given, but for those not working at a paid job, like stay at home moms, and dads with a gaggle of children, it works the same way.  Being a parent in the mountains with the children is easier on the soul than than when at home.   No clue as to why, but might have something to do with all that flotsam released at home prior to loading up the Caravan.

Vacations are meant to let go, relax, recharge, decompress, and reconfigure your inner systems.  A recalibration of our systems to take on the coming year is something we all need, otherwise we will tackle the new year with an outdated machine. If we were disappointed with the previous year it is not going to get any better in the coming year if you keep doing it with the same clutter in your attic.

I think that that a lot of folks actually dread vacations.  There's the planning, shopping for supplies, the travel arrangements, and packing all the while you are still working, and stressing.  The stress, and dread only increases, and carries over into your time away.

Here's a simple way of telling the difference between a vacation, and a family event, which is just redirected work in another location.

A fisherman alone with his thoughts.  ©2012 WJ Hersee
A vacation is time away.  Away anywhere.  No schedule, no rules.  Maybe a desire to do, but no urgency to do it before the end of the week.  

A vacation is time to wake up early to catch the sunrise if you haven't had a chance to all year long, or sleep late if you have greeted too many sunrises over the past twelve months.  If it's a beach day, then all you need is a blanket, some chairs, sunscreen, and something to wear that you don't mind getting wet.  The sun will dry you. No big production, no major planning, just go.    Nothing planned other swimming, sunning, walking the shore, reading, and people watching.  

A family event, like time at Disney World, requires a time schedule, planning multiple destinations for the day, transportation, and meals for the day, the location of those meals, reservations, running from place to place so that you get your moneys worth. This is only the planning for each day you're there, it doesn't even include the pre-trip planning.  That can be a stroke in the making.

In other words, it's work.  Another job, in a nicer place, happier place than work, but still, it's work.  The head doesn't have a chance to empty, only more is added.

That's the difference between an event, and a vacation.  

Don't fool yourself next time you are due to take some time off from work, be sure to plan downtime into your family event.  That way it will become a vacation, and not just another race to the finish.  You did that all year long, now it is time to take off the running shoes, and put on flip-flops, grab a rod, and do nothing more exerting than thinking, and then, not even out loud.

1 comment:

Anonymous comments not accepted, and will be rejected. Please use your full name. Choose "Name / URL" and enter your name, and your name ONLY. Leave "URL" blank.