Searching for a Vacation

sunrise in Denia - a great vacation

sunrise in Denia - a great vacation

Random Observation/Comment #209: The world is filled with crazy people trying to do crazy things only to pass the time.  It hurts my head wondering the origins of these brilliant sports, all of which are probably extremely exhilarating and loads of fun, but include such a dangerous twist that I would personally rather stay on solid ground.  For example, who decided to jump off a large mountain on a piece of wood and build large metal boxes to bring people up and do it all over again?  Of course, I love skiing, but sometimes I wonder how crazy of an idea it is.  Adrenaline junkies follow their extreme-sports by adding a higher probability of death into the equation of a simple sport.  If the idea of jumping out of an airplane wasn’t fulfilling enough, they decided to bring a snowboard and do tricks in the air while plunging towards some, very solid, Earth.  I guess it’s this type of unique injection into a community that makes life more livable (even if they are significantly shortening it).  It’s an undeniable fact that there are events happening around this world that show the most evil side of our species, but there are things that this world has to offer that are breathtaking beyond our wildest imaginations.  One of them just might be found while risking your life for no other reason, but to prove that you’re able to push the limits.  Cheers to true passion (with a side order of stupidity).

I’ve invented many reasons to validate these travel experiences (all of which I will discuss in an eventual journal entry). One of these reasons is the search for what I find is the best way to unwind for a few weeks after a month of hard work.

What I considered the “study-abroad experience” living in a dorm brought me back to a freshman year of college-party-life that I dreamed of having (but was stolen from me by the overloaded credits and slave drivers at Cooper).  Unlike my first attempt at having fun, this time my schedule was more flexible and I followed a fantastic adventure filled with drinking alcohol at night, sleeping often, internet usage, and then drinking some more in the afternoon.  In many ways, it was a beautiful mess, and I absolutely loved it.  However, this world is impossible to repeat – I think I’ve had my last hurrah with these types of stupid drunken shenanigans.  Not to say that I won’t drink anymore, but I am done with the Reeperbahn to Fischmarkt scene for a while.  It’s hard to admit, but I think I’m getting older :.

The weekend trips throughout Europe were nice little treats after programming for hours and writing papers.  I went to so many places with just my backpack and my camera with the intention to see all the touristy attractions in major cities.  I was a reporter for a fake audience, and I was trying to just remember the trip and absorb some history.  I asked questions and made new friends at every hostel.  The introductions were simple and I got much practice with making small talk.  I basically tried to formulate my own idea of why people love Europe by asking for other’s opinions.  In my mind, I ranked each location based on a combination of opinions.  I tried to account for the type of personality and order it into a type of chart, hoping that I would learn enough to let people know what their favorite place was depending on their personalities.

I began wondering what my closest friends would find the most fun and found a bit of a smirk appear wondering how they passed each day back home.  I’m sure they’ve been managing.  It’s nice to miss people and be missed.

This was a true backpackers’ world of being open without any plans and just following some tours and going off into some smaller groups.  I still love doing this, but it gets much more difficult to become this type of traveler as you cross an age threshold (around 27 becomes a little creepy).

There was one more unexpected type of vacation during my stay in Europe.  I met a wonderful girl that shared the same enthusiasm for nature and walking.  We climbed mountains together, walked around major cities, took loads of pictures (hers were mostly of me taking pictures), and grew closer to each other like a married couple on their honey moon.  It was one of my favorite parts of this vacation, and I look forward to this type of long term relationship when it happens again.  I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.  The interesting part is that for this type of vacation, the location and sights doesn’t make a huge difference as long as it’s easy on the eyes.  In fact, the blinking Eiffel tower was just a nice background for my main focus.  This is the type of vacation I expect when I’m looking for someone to grow old with, but with the next few years, I think I’ll be trying a different method of unwinding.

I was mainly thinking about this entry right before I fell asleep during a siesta in Denia.  My mind had finally cleared itself of schedules and tasks.  I didn’t feel pressured or in any sort of rush to do anything in particular.  I ate amazing food and chatted with great people in a summer beach house.  In many ways, it gave me a weird grandparent-feeling with the sounds of the swarm of cousins laughing by the pool and the smell of a freshly prepared lunch at 3PM before an afternoon siesta.  Time passed so slowly, yet I yearned for it to continue after it was over.  It gave me time to stop and think about life, which is sometimes neglected due to a clutter of routines and stress.  Although I had accomplished a very limited number of tasks throughout that week, I felt revived.  My brain had finally taken a deep breath from the surface after diving deeper into life and careers.

So what is my vacation?  Just like the saying, “Home is in your head,” so are vacations.  Who said home and vacations are on separate domains?  More than anything, I missed my friends.  I think my next vacation will be spent with them.  We’ll all be bums together.

~See Lemons Finally Relax