Have you shifted to thinking about what you are going to do to Enjoy More NOW? It’s almost a year since the first official stay-at-home requirements for here. Patti and I are more than two weeks past our second vaccination. We feel like we are breaking out. We’ve shifted into, “What’s fun to do?” mode. That’s travel for us. We spent NO MONEY on travel this last year. I wrote in November that we retirees had more money at any time in our lives, and we all have about 10% more now. Worry about money can’t hold us back. It’s time to spend to enjoy! This post mentions a few things we have planned.
== Gotta travel ===
We both like to travel and like to target two big trips each year. I spent most of this week renewing the plans we had for two big trips that we did not take in 2020: England and Italy. I really like to lock in dates and concretely plant those future markers on the calendar. Just thinking about them makes us happy. I can imagine we’re there already. Anticipation = happiness.
We usually go to England – the Lake District – for two weeks in late May-early June; I think we’ve gone there about five times now. Patti bought the tickets to leave late August; we’re thinking that there will be no travel restrictions then. I made all the room reservations this week; I basically renewed the ones we had for last May. We stay in three places and in the same rooms; two still had our deposit from last year. We already are replaying our favorite hikes in our head.
Patti bought the airline tickets and I renewed the reservations for a walking trip to Tuscany for mid-October. Many of our friends have been there, but we have not. Our friend, Tina, will join us, and that will be fun. I booked that trip through a company that we have used when we went to Sicily. I had them stretch their one-week walking itinerary to almost two weeks for us.
== Shorter trips ==
We’re up for smaller trips this year. I’d like to shoot for a short trip at least once a month. We have two coming up: one night with six friends at the Omni Bedford Springs. That’s a terrific place two hours from here. Of course, Patti had to get the bargain, bargain rate!
We have a time-share for a week every other year on Hilton Head Island; that will be the first full week of April. The weather is good that week when it usually is darn chilly here. Patti does not want to fly, so we will drive. It’s about 11 hours and that is A LOT of driving for us. We have high school + college friends that we’ll visit in Lexington, VA on the way back. That will break up the driving to amounts I may be able to stand.
Our niece’s family is in DC, and Patti booked a couple of nights close to the fourth of July weekend in DC. We’ll stay the 4th in the B&B we stayed in for the 4th in 2019. That was on the way back in Sharpsburg, MD near the Antietam Civil War Battlefield. The fourth of July parade in Shepherdstown, WV was a blast: a moving square dance in the parade was my favorite. We caught the Thursday night jam session at O’Hurley’s General Store. Our B&B as gave us a voucher for Nutter’s Ice Cream shop in Sharpsburg. The man in front of me bought this banana split; I think it was $6. I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.
We’ve talked about Montreal-Quebec and the eastern shore of Maryland, but we don’t have anything on the books. I’m leaning to the eastern shore. The weather would be terrific in May. Patti has a life-long friend in Columbia, MD. We’d visit on the way.
== Getting into shape ==
Our trips to Europe have always been active. We really like walking there. But I can no longer go and walk myself into shape there. I have to get in shape here to be able to comfortably walk six to eight miles. August is a long time from now, but the weather is better. We decided this was week to start to get into shape for walking. BOY, do I need to work to get into reasonable shape! We walked 1.5 miles, basically all downhill, to a park and had lunch with friends on Wednesday. Obviously, the return was basically all uphill. I was pooped. I pushing now to average three miles per day.
It also does not help that I am carrying more than a few extra pounds. I finally started to get back to the routine of weighing-in each morning. I’d guess I had a year hiatus. I was pleased at my first weigh-in and told Patti than I had only gained three pounds. I obviously misread, since the second reading said I was eight – maybe ten – pounds more than I weighed last year at this time. Not good. Bye-bye, Trader Joe’s coffee ice cream.
Conclusion: We all have to feel like we’re cautiously breaking out. It’s time to work at ENJOYING NOW. For Patti and me right now, that means planning trips. Whatever it is that you enjoy, GO FOR IT. You have more money now than you have ever had in your life; money worries can’t hold you back.