Several times over the last few weeks, people have asked me about our upcoming vacation. Way too often, the comments I’ve gotten have been along the lines of – insert mopey Eeyore-voice here – “boy, I’m really jealous,” “must be nice,” “I wish I could take a 2-week vacation,” “wow, two weeks? I’d never be able to be away for two weeks.” Etc., etc., blah, blah, blah.
When I ask people why they don’t think they could take a two week vacation (keeping in mind that many of them don’t even take one-week vacations) I get answers like, “my wife would never spend that long in a car/on a plane/with me,” or “we could never leave the cat/dog/fish/grandchild that long,” or we just can’t afford that while we’re paying for private school/ivy league college/my Mercedes/my wife’s Mercedes/our 4000 square foot house.” I get the same comments when I buy a new camera, to which I reply something about the new Harley/boat/RV or the golf club membership or the 3 car payments that some other people have.
Most people don’t mean anything by their comments, they are just trying to express their interest or make conversation. I understand that, but it still bothers me.
Everything we do has a price. My friend John Schornak refers to it as “currency.” He says there is a cost to everything, and it just depends on what kind of currency you want to use to pay for whatever you do or buy. And I agree. Sometimes it means giving up a fancy car to pay for a vacation. Sometimes it means teaching classes to pay for a camera. Sometimes it means wearing older clothes to be able to eat out more. What do you want? What are you doing to get it, and what are you willing to give up? I’ve always tended to err on the “Life” side of the Work/Life balance equation. Not everyone agrees.
Granted, we’ve been very fortunate. We’ve made good choices and things have gone our way. Some people have had bad luck, and I understand that. But most people have just made different choices, and I believe that sometimes luck comes from good planning and making the right choices. Choices that suit our needs and desires. The grass is always greener somewhere else, but that doesn’t necessarily make it better. That just means that it’s different.
I’m going away for a couple of weeks. Have fun and be good. And no whining!
This is my 200th post. Can you believe it? Thanks for stopping by and making it fun.