Holiday Diaries

I really feel like I’ve entered the silly season early this year. This may have a lot to do with the fact that I took holidays at the beginning of November and went overseas to Honolulu and Las Vegas. The friend I travelled with, commented constantly towards the end of our trip “OMG we’ve packed a lot in”. I felt it too, especially with the third pre 5am pick up for the airport. For both of us, I think we realized at that point, we were tired. With every holiday I take, the first couple of days are generally undertaken like Speedy Gonzales. Have to see everything I can and do everything I can. I usually slow down significantly after a couple of days but this time we had three nights in Honolulu, then the Speedy Gonzales behavior got a restart when we got to Las Vegas. We took one morning where we said “let’s just get up when we get up”. That was a good thing. It helped keep us going for the next 5 days. But OMG, we packed a lot in!

The intent of this trip was for my friend to attend 5 days of the Professional Bull Riding (PBR) World Finals in Las Vegas. I crashed the holiday, suggested going via Hawaii. While I got to the last 2 days of the PBR, I had 3 days of my own time to fill in while my friend did the other 3 nights of PBR. The first night on my own, I was aiming for an early night as I had a 530am pick up for a helicopter flight to the Grand Canyon. The early night didn’t actually happen and I didn’t get back to the hotel until close to 11pm. People watching got me suckered in and I missed the shuttle bus back to the hotel that would have got me a good night’s sleep. On my second night, I booked a show. There are so many shows to see in Las Vegas. Last time I went, I saw 3 Cirque de Soleil shows plus another show. The shows tend to remain in Las Vegas for quite some time so I narrowed my pool of options on this trip. The other great thing about Las Vegas is the residencies that musicians undertake there. Celine Dion has been there for such a long time, that the hotel she performs at, built her a concert hall, calling it the Colosseum. I had the opportunity to get tickets to The Backstreet Boys. While a lot of my friends actually teased me a bit for it, I think a lot of my friends were a little jealous too. It was an awesome concert. The venue was intimate, you were able to see everything from pretty much anywhere in the theatre, and the Boys were so interactive with the audience. At one point there was only 4 people between me and the boys. They are about to undertake a World Tour, so if you get a chance, go see them.

Right now, I writing this from my flight from Las Vegas to Honolulu. We still have a couple of days in Honolulu where we have very little planned and nothing booked except our hotel and airport shuttle. We are meeting up with a friend that lives there and going exploring but we both agree that these next couple of days need to be a little more rejuvenating than what the last week has been. On our first leg in Honolulu, we wandered along the shore of Waikiki and I noticed how many people strung hammocks up between the palm trees. I would love to spend a couple of days doing just that. The fact that I don’t have a hammock with me does nothing to stop me wanting to do that. How many times do you go on holidays and when you get home, you feel like you need holiday from your holiday? It can be hard to wind down, especially if you are picking up and moving from place to place every couple of days because you don’t really get the chance to unpack and settle in. This is one of the reasons why I like a cruise because you can unpack on day one, see lots of different places and then pack up again on the last day. Days at sea mean sleep ins, cocktails in and by the hot tubs and naps on the lounges looking out to sea. While I’m not on a cruise this time, these next few days are mostly certainly about the rejuvenation. It’s been a big year for me. I left a job after nearly 23 years, quickly started a new job, all while building Fitness For Wellness and doing more study to provide more classes that my clients need in their life (got to have a little yin to the yang). Just as the holiday was approaching, I could feel myself starting to really need the break. I remember saying to my co-workers, I’m here in body but my mind is on a beach in Hawaii.

You know I go on about self-care. I won’t apologise for it because I really don’t think we are taking the message in. We all nod, and say “yes I know I need to do that but …”. There is no but. To be totally clinical about it, it is essential for optimum operation. Like a car, we all need ongoing maintenance, including fuel stops and cleaning. Some maintenance is quick and more regular, others are more of a deeper level maintenance. That’s what I consider my holiday time as. I have definitely packed a lot in at the front end of this holiday. There were opportunities I saw that I just didn’t want to pass up. To have been able to get to the Grand Canyon for a second time and go via helicopter, landing inside the Canyon was an experience I’ll never forget. It was an opportunity like that, that made me feel rejuvenated despite the early start and pretty late finish the night before. The next few days, I’m looking forward to a much slower pace, a lot less sequins, glitter and neon lights and a lot more beach and quiet time. That is my deeper level maintenance time. To some extent, I planned my leave pretty well giving me a couple of days at home before going back to work. That will be spent reconnecting with #gymdog who was incredibly put out by me walking out the door with a suitcase.

So the next holiday you plan, have a think about what you want to get out of it. Is it time for a deeper level maintenance? Are you going to restore your soul through seeing as much of the part of the world you are in or just taking everything at half speed? Know what it is you need and run (or walk) with it. Don’t underestimate the value of experiencing new things in a new part of the world. I’ve seen a lot of the world, some places that are definitely off the tourist track and one thing I have learnt is that to grow personally, I will continue to explore different parts of the world. It is what rejuvenates my soul. Find what rejuvenates yours.