What is a Vacation?


By Cliff Locke

The other night a few friends and I were at dinner and we were discussing vacations.  I didn’t realize that it would be such an open subject.  I thought people would say where they have been or where they would like to go, but that’s not what happened.

I told them that because I like to stay busy while on vacation that I liked to book week long tours.  After all I do write for HE Travel and they provide excellent tours all over the world.  I explained that they had everything from biking tours and white water rafting to culinary and cultural tours and everything in between.  I enjoy these types of vacations because food, accommodations, transportation and activities are all planned and I just have to sit back and enjoy.


Then Jenni said, while sipping on her wine, that she only has been on cruises.  She enjoys them for some of the same reasons that I liked tours, everything is planned out, but on a cruise she said that she only does what she finds interesting.  She can choose different meal options and also pick which ports of call she wants to experience.  Plus she explained that many cruises have great Broadway type shows that never disappoint.


Tom spoke up and exclaimed that while he is on vacation he wants to sit by the pool and relax.  He said he is happy eating at the hotel that he is staying at or walking a short distance to enjoy local flavor and his favorite cocktail. However, he added, that his vacations are about forgetting about work and home and totally unplugging and getting a great tan!

Dawn and Chuck said that they were campers.  They started in tents when they were younger, “roughing it” in the middle of a forest next to a stream.  They would cook on a campfire and go for long hikes.  But now, close to 60 years old, the tent has given way to an RV and the forest has become a RV park with long walks instead of hikes.  They both said that meeting new people was a fun way to spend their vacations.


“When it comes to vacations”, Sheryl announced, she wanted to plan everything from where they would go and what they would do.  Always trying to find some new adventure.  Something that they hadn’t done before.  She enjoyed seeing the sights and staying as busy as she could.  Learning everything there was to know about the destination she had chosen.  They had hiked up the middle of a rocky waterfall on one vacation, eaten ostrich on another and rode horses on the beach on another.

As we all said our good nights, loaded up in our cars and headed home, I thought about all the different options there were for vacations.  I guess that any type of vacation is great as long as you are doing what you want.  Relaxing how you want.  And seeing the world the way you want.  Vacations are about you, a time to enjoy life and destress and rejuvenate yourself.