So our Good for the Soul Creative Community has been a little quiet recently and some of that was due to launching the pilot training I described. However, in addition to that, I’ve been getting ready for a long vacation in New Zealand (when it takes almost 30 hours to travel there, you want to make sure you’re there for a while!). I write this post in Franz Josef while we wait for the skies to clear up a bit so we can go explore the nearby Fox Glacier.
In the spirit of Libby’s lists and what she learned from her vacation last year, I thought I’d create my own list of what I’ve experienced so far and how it relates to life outside of travel.
- Share your excitement with others – it’s contagious. Just before we were leaving (actually on the the way to the airport), I needed to stop by my doctor’s office for a quick cortisone injection to calm down an angry hip. In the course of trying to move things along so we could officially start vacation, I mentioned our trip and everyone wanted to talk about it. The nurse wanted to know where we were going, the physician’s assistant gave us some great recommendations from her visit to New Zealand last summer and the doctor wanted to know how much Lord of the Rings stuff we were doing (spoiler alert: none). It was really fun to share my excitement with them and watch their perk up in the middle of their work days.
- Plan to your own level of comfort. My husband and I approach vacation planning very differently. He’s satisfied once the itinerary is set to not worry about it again until he’s packing for the trip (which is typically the day of or the night before, but no earlier). I tend to be on the other side of the spectrum. While I don’t necessarily start physically packing until closer to departure, I begin packing several weeks out to make sure I’ll have what I need and can make the best of the trip, especially on a long trip that this where the temperatures will vary by more than 40 degrees as we travel around. I want to make sure I’m ready. We’ve traveled together enough now that we know this about each other and have learned not to force what makes us comfortable onto the other (well, most of the time, anyway…)
- It can be nice to unplug. For the longest leg of our trip (a 14+ hour flight from Houston to Auckland), we had no internet. I’ve always been a little hesitant to connect at 30,000 feet if for no other reason than it’s one of the last places where it was okay to be out of touch. Having said that, I’ve become accustomed to being connected. And while crammed into an airplane seat for that amount of time wasn’t the most fun part, it was nice to take a break from the rest of the world for a bit. I read, watched a couple movies, managed to get some sleep and started to focus on getting ready to be on vacation. It was a nice little buffer time.
- Recognize when you’re done (and it’s okay to be done!). When we arrived in Queenstown, we did out best to keep going so we could get over the jet lag and get on local time. We were doing pretty well until we went to grab an early dinner. By the time the food came out, my husband and I were snipping at each, apologizing for said snipping and really just trying to keep out heads off the table. We were exhausted and DONE. We scrapped our plans to explore Queenstown that night and just headed back to the hotel to crash. We realized everything would still be there in the morning. There’s nothing wrong with changing plans so you can fully enjoy them (and still be speaking to your travel partner after the first day). 😉
I’ll have more to share about our adventures, but in the meantime, I’ll leave you with our view of Queenstown during our first day of exploring. Enjoy!