The Vacation Mindset

I mentioned to somebody the other day that I really enjoy going to the airport nowadays. It has ceased to be a hassle and has become part of the overall vacation experience. It’s all about adjusting your mindset. Being stuck in traffic on the way to the airport is just a reminder that you’re already on vacation. All of your travel companions in the cars around you are just heading to another day at the sweatshop. Not us! Woo Hoo! The same feeling hits me in random parking garages. I get flashes of parking a rental car in a resort garage. That vacation feeling hits me sometimes, even if I’m just paying my taxes at city hall.

It’s all about slipping into The Vacation Mindset. Pulling into the offsite airport parking lot is always followed by the frantic effort to unload the car before the shuttle pulls up. Upon boarding, my wife and I will often ask where everyone is headed. The business travelers look at my cargo shorts with envy as we catch the ride over to the terminal for our flight to Las Vegas, Florida, or Hawaii. Follow that up with our pre-vacation meal at McDonald’s or Starbucks and we’re definitely getting into the groove. As we sit at the gate reading, listening to music, or lightly napping, it’s all part of the experience. Even lining up to board the plane can be enjoyable if you chit-chat with your linemates. “How about those Lions?” The response, “Ugh!” See, we’re making friends already!

When my wife and I arrive at our condo resort destination, there was always one hour of each trip I would dread. Going grocery shopping in the morning. However, now we make it part of our vacation ritual. As soon as we arrive, we drop our bags at the condo and go out for a nice dinner. Either down by the pool bar, or at a local restaurant. Now, instead of hauling our butts out of bed in the morning to an empty kitchen, we force ourselves to take a post-meal walk in the grocery store. An added bonus is less impulse buying on a full stomach! There’s enjoyment in every phase of travel if you recognize it for what it is, VACATION! It’s just all part of the process. Aloha!

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