Thursday, February 4, 2010

Craving a Vacation

Now that Punxatawny Phil has predicted just six more weeks of winter it seems I'm  inundated with email messages with swimsuit advertisements and catalogs filled with spring and summer clothes.  All this while wind chills hover near zero and the moon spends more time overhead than the sun.  This is the time of year when I often hear (and think) "If I could only get away to somewhere warm..."  Living in the northeast, this happens to me every February.  Actually, this craving for warmth kicks in before February, usually in early January just after the holidays are over.  Even the idea of going away, escaping the cold and taking a vacation from my life, is so tempting.  I'm almost 56, and though I could never understand the "snow bird" phenomenon, now I do.  My daughter Katie prays for snow.  I pray that we are missed by every predicted storm.  Let them sway to the south, or just miss us to the east.  I don't want to be snow bound.

It didn't used to be this way.  No one found more joy in a beautiful snow fall than I did.  I saw every snowflake as its own sparkling gem.  Now I look at them as little trouble makers who gang up against me and keep me from making it up the driveway, who cause me to distrust other drivers (like my father used to warn:  Look out for the other guy) and to drive like the little old lady I never thought I'd be. 

So, every post card from a warm and tropical place, every commercial for Royal Caribbean, every Lands End catalog with its summer line up of swimming suits makes me long for beach chairs and coolers of cold drinks and I wouldn't even mind a little sand in my swimsuit! 

My friends Barb and Cathi are leaving in March for a cruise to the Southern Caribbean.  I was supposed to be on that cruise but it didn't work out this time.  If I'd never been on a cruise, I probably wouldn't be too disappointed, but I have and it was one of the very best times I've ever had.  I could be happy staying on the cruise ship the entire time and never stepping foot off the big, beautiful boat.  My favorite days were those at sea, up by the pool, with tropical drinks and sunshine and fun conversations with my friends.  If I think about it, somehow this cold winter fades away and I'm transported back to the warmth of that time.  I will go the next time, and hopefully the time after that.  Warmth WILL return to my life!

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