me, the reluctant traveler

P1020366This is my third year as a “snowbird”.  I believe the term refers to those who live in the northern portion of the hemisphere and who go south to homes in warmer climates during winter.  In that we do go south we could be called snowbirds….I just realized that I don’t like that reference.

It makes me sound, well, old. (And  according to the decade I’m in-physically, I have been here for 5 and a smidge  of them…but what makes a person old?  In my head, which is where all the really important stuff resides, I’m 46. (A girl can dream! ))

It’s taken me this long to realize there are both pros and cons to living 6 months in  a timber-house and 6 months in a tin-house-on-wheels.  It’s taken this long to make the connection. And in doing so I realized I am also a reluctant traveler. I have been telling friends that I was ‘struggling’ this winter with our travels, and even then it didn’t feel correct.

  • Struggle:      (verb)  to contend with an adversary or opposing force.
  • Reluctant:      (adjective)  unwilling; disinclined

I had to look up definitions to sort this issue out in my brain. Since I was  not ‘struggling’ against my spouse who manages all-things-with-tires, it  wasn’t the correct word to define my overwhelming feelings of, well, being in the trailer.  However, truthfully that wasn’t it either.  Because I do like bits and pieces of this new life.  I have had just a handful of days of being “disinclined” to living my life as a vagabond.  There are lots of days in 6 months….approximately 180.

So, looking at it from a strictly logical POV I thought it best to list the pros and cons to assist my emotional self towards understanding.  And for those of you out there that know me, frankly, prayer wasn’t really providing much after acceptance kicked in.

Pros: 

  • warmer weather  and more natural light (- less dark dreary days)
  • exploration of small town America/US National Parks,
  • hiking/new sights,
  • new cultures/ new friends,
  • bucket list items checked off,
  •  fewer distractions, more time to photograph, read, needlepoint, write
  • more time with spouse

 Cons:

  • miss my house and it’s conveniences (i.e., washing machine, closet space, meditation room),
  • privacy – at all levels,
  • my beloved VW Beetle – ‘ChaCha’ and the independence it represents,
  • my friends,
  • my yard – even in winter it holds all my energy/work,
  • the holiday  and decorating,
  • kitchen counters and space to cook – as well as the dishwasher attached to them,
  • my exercise studio/classes,

It appears that the cons win, though I am not looking at it from a win/lose perspective. The pro list is all the reasons we are splitting our time. Had we not, I most likely  would never have seen the bison, elk or grisly bears cubs in Yellowstone, the beauty and grandeur of Lake Louise, hiked the 3+miles to  the Plain of Six Glaciers Tea House for lunch or collected seashells from the sands of El Coyote Beach, Baja Sur Mexico or walked the streets of Tombstone, AZ.

My ‘reluctance’ isn’t on the cons list at all.  I am reluctant to travel due to what I haven’t done during the time we are actually in the timber-house in the suburbs.  Creating a new ‘present’ where I can meet new people, participate in local events, create adventure while at home.  Making this happen will be the goal and then seeing if my reluctance turns to excitement next Fall when we hit the streets.

Wish me luck…

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