Recently I enjoyed a week in a new city and did, well, pretty much NOTHING! This is a rather new activity to me, one which I am endeavoring to learn. In my previous life, before self-discovery and starting to lead the life I imagined, vacations (few as they were) were spent racing from one well-known tourist attraction to another. It was a great way to see many sites in Europe and I do not regret it, but now I appreciate another way of travel.

I remember quite clearly when this shift began. A dear relative had passed away and several family members and I were in San Francisco for her funeral. Before the church service and  ‘Celebration of Life’ party, we drove around to see a bit of the city. During the drive, my roommate mentioned going on vacation to our homeland – locations in the former Yugoslavia. I asked her what sites they saw. She mentioned a few non-touristy places with more of a local interest to our distant relatives. Mostly they spent time visiting, eating, drinking, and repeated those activities during their entire stay. I was dumbfounded! The thought had NEVER occurred to me to pay all that money, travel all that way, and DO NOTHING! What sort of a return on your investment is that?

Now I get it. I finally get it. Vacations are for rest and relaxation. It is time to recharge your batteries. (No wonder mine were running on empty for years!) Sure, site-seeing is fun and educational, but even those trips can include more R and R, so I have learned.

So when I went to Arizona to check out some property and see a friend, there was not much on the agenda. I went to Key Hole Mountain, the Herd Museum, Old Town Scottsdale, and enjoyed some nice restaurants. Most of the time was spent in the lovely pool at my AirBnB. It was a very nice pool, but I have a nice pool and yard at home too. What was the difference, I pondered. The difference was I could actually RELAX somewhere else. There was no need to check emails, prune the shrubs, or water the grass. I was at someone else’s home where I was only responsible for paying the nightly charge. It was a revelation to me! I was truly able to relax.

My goal now is to translate that experience into my everyday life. When I am floating in my pool, with the water fall gently running, I intend to be carefree and enjoy every minute of it. Someone else can be responsible for the emails and the yard work. This IS MY TIME!

 

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