I was thinking the other day about travel, and how clearly David and I have made it a priority in our lives. Now, before we started dating, I’d been to a few places: Mexico (x4), Dominican Republic, Costa Rica (x2), Oman, Dubai, Qatar, Bahrain, and on numerous roadtrips, primary through BC, Montana and Idaho. But in the three years (tomorrow!) that we’ve been together, we’ve managed a ton of trips. Especially considering work, and the 8 months he was unemployed, and buying a house right before the wedding, which we paid for.
Our first trip was to Washington DC – 10 days in April 2009 of museums and monuments and cherry blossoms. David was unemployed shortly after we got back.
Then for the May Long, we drove to Vancouver to visit my sister. We hung out and ate good food and took an extra day coming home so we could mini golf in Kelowna.
David was still unemployed when we decided that August was the time was right (and we had the money) to go to Scotland and Ireland for three weeks. Castles and museums and ruins and cider and beer and trains and a boat and soccer and more castles in Scotland. Giant’s Causeway and cider and beer and museums and ruins and a heartbreaking tour of Belfast and a cave tour and the Burren and a viking boat tour and Gaelic football and passage tombs and whiskey and Guinness and a proposal at a neolithic portal tomb.
The next trip was March for our honeymoon – we went to St. Lucia in the Caribbean, and lay on the beach and rode zip lines and saw UNESCO volcanos and went to Martinique for a day and flew in a helicopter.
In September, we took some of my inheritance and went to Europe for three and a half weeks, starting in Paris and ending in Frankfurt, via Belgium and the Chezk Republic. We ate and drank our way, walking till my feet actually bled, and loving the whole thing (except for Prague). We saw the highlights of Paris and Versailles, Vimy Ridge, the battlefields of Iepre, Brussels, Waterloo and two UNESCO cathedrals in western Germany (Arras and Cologne). We spent most of a week in Berlin, exploring the depressing history and museums and walking tours. Prague was next, and it didn’t do much for me, but Kutna Hora and the church decorated in bones was cool. We also saw a hockey game there. We finished the trip via and NHL exhibition game in Mannheim, and a fabulous festival day in Frankfurt.
David went with a friend to Detroit and Ohio for a sporting weekend – NHL, AHL, NFL, MLS and a college hockey game, all in 4 days. I went to Vegas with some girlfriends that same weekend. Then we went to Raleigh and Nashville for hockey games with the same hockey obsessed friend, and I got to go to Fort Nelson for work. Though that was only an overnight trip and the weather was just above -30, so I don’t think you can count it as a vacation, but it was two chopper rides and flying in private planes, so I’ll count it.
Then, in March, for our anniversary, we went to LA for an extended weekend and enjoyed ourselves despite the weather. La Brea Tar Pits, of course – satisfying my childhood dreams. Santa Monica Pier and Venice Beach. The Getty. Two hockey games – Flames road trip against LA and Anaheim. Queen Mary and the Long Beach Aquarium. Hollywood and Warner Brothers Studio Tour and lots of wandering around.
I’m not really going anywhere with this. I’m just feeling very, very lucky and happy to have gone to so many places in such a short time. I’m happy it’s been such a priority in our lives, and so happy we’ve been able to afford it. Vacations, investments and paying off the mortgage is where almost all of our money goes, and that works for us. I’m hoping we can squeeze at least one more trip in this year – David’s voting for Boston and/or Hawaii, and I’m leaning towards Montreal or Jamaica. But you know there are no wrong answers here, and that whatever we do will be awesome. Because we like the same things as we travel (museums, good food, good drinks, early evenings and endless walking) and I’m pretty much happy anywhere if he’s there beside me.