?Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn?t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.? ?Mark Twain
There are scientifically proven (they must be!) articles on the benefits of travel. They used words like empowering, unplugging, release, broadening, education.
And it must be true. It?s a break?physically, psychologically, emotionally.
It?s an adventure?geographically, mindfully, mentally.
It?s healthy?routine-wise, habit-wise and stress-wise. I am even transcending the fear of getting lost. (Hence the adventure part.)
Spring break allowed my girls and I to take a short trip. Nothing fancy, nothing crazy. Nothing more than a state?or two, as it turned out?away.
We did go through the normal ?it?s nice to get away, but nice to get back to your own bed? feelings, too. Funny thing is, I was ready to climb back in the car about eight hours later. This reiterates one thing that writer Susan Sontag said, ?I haven?t been everywhere, but it?s on my list.?
The driving part was pleasantly uneventful and took us to roads we had not traveled?which we covered, hopping across state lines all weekend, to adventures we hadn?t expected, like meeting a deaf girl my youngest daughter?s age in the hotel swimming pool?giving me the chance to figure out, with her dad?s help, how to communicate with her; and giving my daughter the chance to race her across the pool a few times.
And, of course, living out of a hotel for a few days is always an adventure. All of these things, unplanned and planned, reinforced my adopted philosophy: ?Once a year, go someplace you?ve never been before.?
We need to go more. And more often.
The trick is shutting off the clock. Our trip was quick. I could have easily thought about what had to be done when we got back, but I didn?t.
I lost track of the day of the week, I didn?t care what time it was. It was one car, two travel buddies, the radio and a loose plan. I don?t know what (aside from more time) could be better.
I don?t know if I?ll fulfill all of the romantic travel fantasies that have stemmed from novels and movies. I?m not sure that steamships and lonely train whistles will magically appear from the past. But there will be more spring breaks, more tanks of gas and more ?somewheres? to add to my everywhere list