With the price of gasoline inching upwards again, and the glamour
taken out of flying to new destinations, it might be time for you and yours to
think about taking a "staycation", a word coined to describe staying
at home relaxing, and doing nothing or easy somethings that you don't normally
get to do.
I can remember when I was pretty young and my family did
this because "real" vacations were few in those days. There wasn't a jazzy
name for what we did then, but we took a week and went to visit some nearby
attractions, a different one each day. It's
about all we could afford at that time.
So staycations are not as new as they would have us think.
But what to do if you decide this fall that that is the route for you?
~~ Enjoy your home.
Sit on your porch or deck and watch the world go by, cup of coffee in
hand and a book in the other. We often accumulate "leisure" items for
our homes and then don't have the time to use them. Things like pool tables, swimming
pools, or other outdoor games. Who's up for a game of crochet?
~~ Explore your town.
How often have you been asked by visitors to go see some of the sights
near your home that you have never gone to? When you live in a place, you
figure there is always time to do the things you want to do. It's called "Leisure
Procrastination". Actually it's not, I just made that up, but it's true. Within
a 30 minute drive from our home, we can see a spectacular view of the city of
Pittsburgh from Mt. Washington that will amaze the most jaded traveler. The only
time we go up there is when someone who is visiting us suggests it. When I am
there, looking down at this beautiful city, I always wonder why we do that. But
we do that. I'm betting there are some places like that around you. Now's the
time to go and enjoy them.
~~ Turn off all electronic devices. No, we are not quoting the
in flight wait staff. If you really want to relax at home, turn off your
phones, iPads, laptops etc. etc. If the people at work sense that you are still
available, they will call or send emails no matter the day or time. Reading
them or listening to messages brings you right back to the work zone and definitely
would cut your staycation short. Tell the office you are in a remote section of
Nepal on vacation and won't be able to receive messages. Then pull up your
favorite lawn chair and read. (Note: Here is one list of the world's ten most remote
locales. Choose wisely.)
~~ Treat yourself: Since
you are saving a lot of money by not traveling, you might consider giving
yourself a treat and trying out a new local restaurant if it fits in your
budget. Or make an appointment for a relaxing massage. Or seek out the best triple
decker cone at local ice cream stands.
~~ But don't overdo. The idea of a staycation is to plan
some fun activities, but also leave time for doing nothing as if you were at
the beach. One idea: If there is a body of water near you -- lake, river,
stream, run, creek -- go sit by it and let the motion of the water relax you.
Close your eyes and you might begin to think you are on a cruise.
By Teresa K. Flatley