With problems like this…

Because I’m me, I always have to be obsessed with something. It’s in my blood to be insane I guess. I can’t help it.

My recent insanity, now that we’re in a New Year and work has slowed down, is travel. Shocking…I know. Because it’s so seldom that I think of such things.

I have a full year to fill with things and 136 vacation hours to burn. What to do?

Last year was my first with 3 weeks…finally lasted at a job past the 5 year mark. We took 2 trips to the beach and I ended up in FLA 3 times. Twice for fun, once for not so fun. I also managed to be off from December 21-January 3. That was fun and re-entry remains difficult.

2012 is posing challenges. It’s supposed to be a St. John year, but it’s just not gonna happen. There are too many boundaries.
1: What to do with the kids. We’d leave Moo at home, that’s a given. She’s NOT coming to St. John until she’s older. That’s a no-brainer. Plenty of people take little ones down there but we are so NOT those people. The thought of it makes me want to poke my eyes out. Shmuppie poses another challenge. We’d have to go in June or September because of her schedule. And, to be frank, we don’t even want to bring her. I know families should vacation as families, but don’t Mom and Dad (and MerlotMan and ChurchBomber) get a little time to themselves? My mother, in a stunning reversal, says we should leave both kids with her and just go.

2: Putting aside the hellbeast that Shmuppie would become, it’s too damned expensive. Delta and US Air seem convinced that we have unlimited funds. Couple that with the jeep, house cost, beer money and planning and St. John suddenly became more task than vacation. I know…cry me a fucking river…it’s too hard to plan a trip to the Caribbean.

3: ChurchBomber and MerlotMan also aren’t sold on St. John this year. They’re going to Ireland for a while and it’s just not meshing on calendars. Until it sinks, St. John will always be there. We’ll be back.

What to do now? My schedule is free.

Here are my plans:
Shmuppie is off for 3 weeks in March. We’ll need to do something to appease her but we don’t want to take a full vacation. We’re thinking of The Great Wolf Lodge. She went last September with my mother for a night and had fun. Moo would have fun splashing around in the kiddie pools and we could limit ourselves to one night there. Add in some coupons and it’s not a bad deal. But, the reviews are mixed at best on it. So, because I’m crazy, I had an idea while running yesterday. I was bundled up from head to toe and had a thought… SNOW! We could go snow tubing somewhere. Moo would have to stay home, but the 3 of us could take a trip to a mountain somewhere and go tubing. 15 minutes of research told me that was a shitty idea if I wanted to stay in state. Yikes…PRICEY! “Hey…West Virginia says they have snow!” I found a resort that offers free lift tickets and has a pool and bowling alley. That could work for a night. Let’s consider March closed; one night somewhere; Great Wolf Lodge for water slides or WV for tubing. 8 vacation hours gone.

April: JewelrySlut and I are convinced that we’re going to take an “us-only” trip this year and April seems to be the time. I found a cute little sound-front house in Emerald Isle that appears to suit our needs. I, obviously, looked everywhere for this trip. I found all-inclusives that would cost like $800 for the 2 of us for the whole week. Then I checked air. I’m not paying $600 to fly ANYWHERE that keeps me in the same time zone. Hell…I’d need to cross many time zones to rationalize such a flight. In the end, EI is close and easy. I’m not booking shit until I see how the next few weeks go. Things could change with my parents in a heartbeat and I don’t need to eat a house deposit because I piss them off by blinking inappropriately. If we go, there go 40 more hours.

June: Shmuppie is off again; for 5 weeks this time. My mother is taking her on their annual “Spoil the Child Cruise”. But that leaves 4 weeks. Last year we went to FLA for the 4th of July. I’m not in the mood to do that again. ChurchBomber and MerlotMan want us to come up to visit. I’m trying to figure out how to get up there while minimizing time off and travel time. We’re not buying 4 plane tickets just to go to NJ. Look at that! $1200 to fly 500 miles. “Sorry kids…put on your seatbelts…we’re going for a ride”. But the fucking ride to NJ sucks such balls. Pretty much the entire trip above Richmond is one potential disaster after another. There’s not a single mile of road between Richmond and Morris County NJ that’s not a potential traffic disaster. 500 miles could easily take 20 hours. Even if I route us west through WV and PA, it’s still a drive. I need to chew on this one. Let’s deduct another 24 hours here.

So far, it’s June and I’m down 9 of my 17 days.

September: I can’t see us all not going back to EI. Shmuppie is off again and we had a great trip last year. The weather is not too hot and the ocean is still warm. I just need to convince myself that I don’t need to go on a full house search. The house we rented in March was great, but, it was a duplex and the main deck isn’t divided. The thought of having to look at people we don’t know does not appeal to us. The one in September would work for us but the stairs were odd. You had to go outside to access the ground level. Said ground level housed the foosball table and laundry. Dock me another 5 days.

That leaves me 3 (maybe 4) days left. I can use them around the holidays and be off again from Dec 22-Jan 2.

I will now argue with myself about all of this. Because, in all this madness, I don’t have a trip to FLA planned. JewelrySlut and Moo will probably take at least one trip. Possibly 2 if Gram gets her knee replaced. But I don’t know when I could make it there AND get to NJ AND get a week with my Beach Baby in April. Because, let’s be honest; that’s the only trip I care about at this point. We have grand plans for the week in April. We plan to DO NOTHING! Sleep, read, eat, have sexy time. That’s it.

Of course, I’ll spend the next several weeks pounding the assorted sites hoping that, somehow, airfares will come down and April will land my ass on an island. But, we all know that’s not gonna happen. And that’s OK…I’ll just need something new to obsess about.

Hmmm…now about that closet of mine I need to reorganize.

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