A few years ago, I unearthed a travel journal from a month-long trip to Europe that I took in 2006. As I reviewed its pages, I was struck by just how many details of the trip I had completely forgotten. And if the memories of a once-in-a lifetime trip that was so impactful to me could fade away – how much of my day-to-day life is lost? Sensations, emotions, achievements, losses, experiences from the mundane to the exceptional, all transforming from that specific moment in time to become that day, that week, that year, that life…

As I get older and gain a better understanding of how fragile, how brief, and how precious life really is, it's become even more important to me to me experience it to its fullest and to try to retain all of those little moments that might otherwise get lost. It's with this idea that I started the process of recording these moments – a travel journal, of sorts.

A travel journal for life.

Thursday, June 27, 2013


Since nothing exciting is happening in real life; just rain and work, I'm going to post again about our recent vacation - since it's really all I can think about anyway.

This vacation was a lot different than any other vacation I've ever taken in my life. You see, the thing is, I'm a planner extraordinaire. Parties, functions, vacations, outings, weekends - you name it, I plan it.  I think I find it a departure from the mundane, the opportunity to focus on fun things and lose myself in details.  Every other vacation, I have booked in advance, planned itineraries and printed lists of best places to eat, must-see places of interest, maps, ratings, known high-crime areas, etc.  It's not that I feel the need to control every second of vacation (I can hear Michael's derisive snort all the way from his office 25 miles from mine), but I loathe wasting precious vacation time trying to decide what to do or trying to find a place to stay.  I like to be prepared.

For this vacation, a little because of lack of time to plan and a little at Michael's behest (he's much more of a "let's just wing it" kinda guy), we didn't plan a thing.  Not one thing.  We booked our flight and reserved our rental car and that was it.  No hotels, no itineraries, no lists - we just went.  I was more than a little apprehensive; certain that we would end up at a crumbling Super 8, off exit 12 of Alligator Alley, bunking with the swamp people while becoming one giant mosquito bite.

The beautiful view from the 7 Mile Bridge to Key West.

But that didn't happen.

What did happen was we decided to drive to Key West, and as we drove, with a mobile app on my phone, I bid on a hotel.  Because it was so last minute (2 hrs before arrival, eek!), we got a ridiculously low price on a ridiculously beautiful hotel.  The Southernmost Hotel in Key West sprawls across multiple blocks and boasts three pools, two private beaches, two swimming piers jutting out into the gorgeous blue ocean, hammocks strung between palm trees all over the property, just to name a few of the features of this place...  It was so beautiful.

Hammocks, hammocks, everywhere.
A very sunny sunning pier.
Happy Toes by the pool. 
While we were in Key West, we boated around the island, watched a Key West sunset, gallery and bar-hopped on Duval, ate famous Key Lime Pie and had a generally lovely time. 

Key West Sunset.
So Michael won.  Turns out, wingin' it worked.

Michael being adorable (and a bit smug) in Key West.

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