Friday, October 5, 2018

Planned Spontaneity??

Sam and I went for a weekend visit to Long Island for my birthday. We rented a house near the ocean and took the ferry over on Friday morning. It was around lunch time when we drove off the ferry so we started discussing food. And that was when I began to notice something about how Sam and I approach vacations.

This was our first time ever taking a trip for just the sole purpose of taking a trip. It was also one of the very few times we were traveling without any kids. Our previous trips involved making sure we were in a particular place for a specific time: visit family, check out/pick up/drop off livestock, visit colleges, or some other planned reason for being where we were. We were either on a schedule or travelling with the kids which made strategically planned stops a necessity and I was the one who did the planning. I mapped out sightseeing stops, stretching-legs stops, and hotels. 

This trip was different: no kids and no plan. I had scouted a few places of interest on the internet and our B&B hostess had recommended a restaurant for us to try. That was it. For lunch I did a quick search on my phone which lead us to a town not too far from the ferry. The restaurant we wanted was crowded so we drove a bit up the road and stumbled onto another restaurant where we ate a lovely lunch on their front porch. I suggested we stroll through the cute little town that was busy preparing for a festival the next day which was how we happened upon a Fireboat Museum and took a tour.

The next morning we went to the Nature Preserve that we had driven past the sign for on our way to our rental. And that's where I really discovered how different Sam and I are! I started down the hiking path and quickly realized Sam had stopped at the kiosk and was perusing the large map of the preserve. So I backtracked and watched as he established where we were on the map. Then after scanning the brochures he picked up the paper version of the trail guide and asked me which way we wanted to go. I shrugged and suggested we just wander the trails and see what we find. 

We started off and after a bit Sam pointed to the spot on the trail map to show where we were. He also then planned the next turn we should take. Sam continued to point out our location on the map, how far we had walked, and how far we had left to go. Meanwhile I was wandering all over the place; walking down side trails and spurs that weren't on the map. 

When we got back after our hike Sam planned out lunch, a hike at a lighthouse, and dinner. While at the lighthouse we signed up for an moonlight lantern tour and scrapped our dinner plans. The next day we knew we had to be at the ferry dock for 1:00 so I suggested we just drive towards the ferry and see what we could see. Sam made a plan for what route we would take.

So there it is. At least when it comes to vacations, I am an adventurer, by the seat of my pants, deal with what comes kind of person, while Sam is a get the map, mark the route, have a plan person. Our next trip is to Iowa. I have decided to forgo my "let's drive and see what we can see" plan in favor of one that is slightly more structured. Sam has agreed to be a little more spontaneous (is there such a thing as planned spontaneity??) We have a destination and a route, but Sam agrees to take a side trail if there is something I want to check out along the way.

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