My memories of childhood vacations are especially happy ones made up of old, dusty beach houses and summers spent with my toes in the most splendid of all farm sand. A trip here or there to Disney World and then there were the occasional trips out west to ski when construction was really booming. As I've grown up, my parents still invited me along and gave me the pleasure of meeting Montana, the most beautiful of all 50 states. And they still treat us all every summer to our family's favorite southern paradise, Edisto.
Daddy and I have also taken some great trips to fantastic places but we've always been considerate of our budget and the repercussions of an expensive vacation. The price was always reasonable but the value of being alone together was priceless.
Last week the vacation fairy visited and we spent it with a silver spoon in our mouths. Vacationing in a place where your every need is met and kids walk around with popped collars and $200 sunglasses chompin on lobster and $10 ice cream cones. I've never lived that way. Never. But we have some sweet friends who occassionally do and were willing to give us a glimpse of how the other side lives.
We went to a place in Key Largo called the Ocean Reef Club. It's a little spot surrounded by emerald green water and perfectly accented in pinks, electric blues, yellows and white. There are million dollar yachts and fishing boats every where you turn and golf carts that cost more than my car. There is expensive food. Expensive wine. Expensive this and expensive that. And it was nice to leave the worries of our mortgage and bills and dissapear to a place where no one worries about those things.
During the day, we played and swam our hearts out. We ate until our bellies were full and Daddy and I fell asleep every night with a soft buzz in our head that reminded us in the morning that we are getting older.
This vacation was fun. But aren't they all? What I learned last week was that it doesn't matter where you are when you take the time to stop your normal routine and take a breath. Being in a place like this is nice but just being on a vacation is the greatest gift of all. No matter where you go on vacation, some things will always be the same....
Excitement still looks the same way.