Vacation or Jail?

What’s the alternative to a little time off? Usually it’s some other kind of time off, like a stress-related illness or maybe prison. Like most of the Middle Class, I […]

September 26, 2012 // Tracy Shaffer // No Comments //

What’s the alternative to a little time off? Usually it’s some other kind of time off, like a stress-related illness or maybe prison. Like most of the Middle Class, I don’t often give myself time off, and taking a vacation is the last thing on my mind. Taking my boys on a trip? Of course, but that’s not really a vacation. We spent 10 days in June whirling around New York and returned exhausted… I mean, uh, exhilarated. Outside of a daily workout, a monthly massage or a trip to the grocery store at midnight, quietude is not in my repertoire.
As a wearer of many hats, there is that perpetual something or someone needing my immediate attention, a feeling I’m sure you can relate to, and after a surprisingly good upturn in the Denver real estate market, mama’s ready for some serious downtime.
So how do you define what you need to rest and reinvigorate?
For me it starts with place, and the ocean is always a suitable salve to soothe my soul. Salt and sound bring me deep rest and my eye loves the infinite horizon. The drama of the Northern California coast works her moody, wondrous magic as a simple walk peels back layers of deadlines and expectation. Tonight I head to San Francisco to gather my best friend and a morning drive up Highway 1 to Point Reyes, maybe Bodega Bay. As the sun downs we’ll wind our way eastward, landing in Sonoma for dinner with the family and a laid back weekend.
It’s not the wine that calls, but the olives, the sourdough bread and the smells that are uniquely These are the ways I spell relief. Oh, and there is that little thing in town, the 115th Annual Valley of the Moon Vintage Festival…
Back to San Francisco for a few days in the City; museums, chocolate and cable cars. A bay cruise and a good meal are great, but what I’m craving is that intense time with friends, living life side by side in moments over decades. Then I’ll be ready to return to all those dragons that need slaying.


Sonoma State Beach photo courtesy of Trip Advisor. Semillon grapes, courtesy of Scott Palazzo and Palazzo Napa Valley Wines, and the best RHCP video ever made.


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