We have a family holiday coming up. I love going on a holiday, whether it’s for a weekend, or a week or a fortnight. For me the trip begins on the day I wake up and think, it’s time for one. The whole process of deciding where to go, when to go, how to go, and what to pack is part and parcel of the whole experience. I had a conversation with a friend who is also going away for the Christmas week, and all she had to say all the time we were together, was about how much of a headache it was to plan the trip. While I gave her all the sympathetic response she expected, the voice in my head said, “ Poor thing, you are missing so much of the fun.”
Fortunately all four of us, my spouse, children and I enjoy travelling. If it’s a long exploratory get away, spanning about a fortnight, then the thinking and planning begins almost four months in advance. The choosing of the destination done, then starts the planning of the itinerary. This is mostly a weekend task as all of us are busy through the week. The amount of arm chair travelling that we have done over the planning period can fill pages. Right from fantasising over staying in exotic palaces to hitch-hiking in trucks, we have it all. The best part is to see the children enjoy this virtual journey as much as the actual trip. Reading about the places one is going to visit,and making a list of must-have local cuisine is also one mandatory ritual. One can feel the mood building up at home as the date of departure comes closer. Bringing down the suitcases and sorting out clothes gives it all a perfect outline. And then we proceed to fill in the picture with the colour of the memories created during the trip.
When I look back on any of the numerous trips we have taken together, I see this entire journey in my mind, and not only the ten or fifteen days I was at some destination. We read so much about how its not only the destination, but also the journey which is important. If each of us could manage to experience this theory even in a small fraction, figuratively and literally, then we would be blessed.