We’ve been home for just over a year. We’ve been living in the same apartment for just under that amount of time. Before this week we’ve taken a few short trips that were fairly nearby. I thought I noticed some interesting things during those trips, but our last journey to Vancouver, BC, for a few days to celebrate Chrismakah really showed us how much our style has changed.
Lodging vs. Being Settled
Even though we usually each had our own sleeping space during the last few years of travel, there were still times when we had to share a room. During our short trips, we’ve ended up in hotels so have had to sleep in the same room. Upon our arrival to Vancouver, Tigger noticed that our hotel room had a separate living room and bedroom. She decided she’d rather sleep on the couch (she didn’t know it was a sleeper) than share a bedroom with me. “I just really value my own sleeping space.”
After years of constantly changing pillows—types, size, number—I have really become used to my pillows. My bottom one is medium and the top one is firm. I like a certain height, feel, and consistency to my pillows now. While the hotels we’ve been to have had very comfortable beds and nice pillows, I’ve had a hard time finding my . . . zone of perfection.
Our hotel bed in Vancouver had 4 pillows plus a roll. I just couldn’t find the right combo. As we discussed the cruise we’re taking in July, I announced I’m probably going to bring my own pillows.
And, frankly, I don’t feel the slightest bit ridiculous for contemplating that.
I was also really excited to get home, change into my fluffy robe, and to sit on my very comfortable living room furniture. When we did get back, sitting down in my favorite seat was like experiencing pure luxury. Even better that our cat joined me.
Boy we missed her greatly, too! Especially our morning routine where I open my bedroom door and she rushes in, jumps onto my bed, climbs onto my chest and purrs loudly as I scratch her head, cheeks, under her chin, etc. Then she falls asleep for a bit before moving down to my feet while I finish my morning reading.
That’s a hard routine to replace at a hotel or Airbnb place.
We’ve spent a lot of time in various big cities all over the world. The town we currently live in is on the small to medium size. The population is only around 50K. We have a nice blend of amenities and open space. It’s fairly easy to get around. Compared to downtown Vancouver? Oh my.
The constant movement and commotion, sirens going day and night, etc., was a bit of a shocker. We usually don’t stay in downtown areas, and I can definitely see why that’s a good plan to follow for future travel. We were wore out pretty quickly and within a couple of days had hit the point where we just didn’t enjoy leaving the hotel to find a place to eat.
Exploring and getting out was always a big part of our travels. It’s the part I’ve missed greatly. I loved that there were so many new things to see and experience, but dealing with all the people, crowds, so much movement, etc., was just too much for us now.
I consider myself a foodie, and one of the reason I have such a cushioned body habitus is because of how much I adore food. This has always been a big part of travel for me as well. I love trying local cuisine, exploring new foods, etc. There were plenty of restaurants to try, but we didn’t really feel comfortable until the day we hit the food trucks. Sitting outside on the steps of a museum building while eating our paper-wrapped lunches and wondering just how close that seagull was going to get had us in our right place.
While we loved the food at the fancy and expensive (for us) restaurant where we went to celebrate Chrismakah, eating grilled cheese sandwiches at the food truck was what made us the happiest.
Train travel really isn’t a viable option for much of the US, and the more I look at traveling the more disturbed I find I am at the thought of a long flight, long travel day, etc. Hours in a car for a road trip? Sure, that works just fine. Five hours in a plane? Oh gawd no.
Especially when that also means travel to the airport, arriving early to get through security, delays, getting out of the airport at the destination, and it just goes on.
For our last trip, it just meant hopping in the car and hitting the road. We arrived at the border in super fast time. The wait there wasn’t too long. Traffic from that point to downtown was utter hell, but at least we were in our own space, could drink beverages we wanted, had music playing on the radio, could stop at a gas station to use the facilities if needed, etc.
I’ll take that over a flight any day thank you very much! Even if that does limit where we can travel.
Our cruise will be leaving and returning to Seattle which is pretty close, so that will be nice. I have some concerns about how I’m going to preserve my sanity on the boat for a couple of days, but hopefully the activities are interesting enough that they consume enough time.
It’s been interesting for me to see how much things have changed simply because we have a regular home now.
How has your travel style changed?