PrioritiesJanuary 14, 2014
I am starting to get pretty excited about our upcoming trip to Costa Rica.
I sometimes get the feeling that people kind of think I am an asshole for taking trips. My response to that is “I don’t have kids.” Obviously that means we can afford to take more trips.
But really, even given that (huge factor) we do make traveling a priority.
My feeling is that all we know is this brief flicker of time on earth, and I need to make the most of it – so bear with me for a minute since I know that sounds super hippy.
When we first got married we did it by ourselves (and our coordinator & hired witnesses) in Italy. It was a great three-week trip spent going to museums and looking at really cool old stuff. By the time we ended up in Rome at the end of it though we were like “Oh sweet, the coliseum.” Awesome, sure, but “…man this is super boring.”
We knew there was way more we could be doing on trips. And by doing I mean DOING! We decided to save the looking at old shit until we were, you know, old! And by old I don’t even know what I mean because I think you are only as old as you choose to be.
In the past 13.5 years we have taken some awesome trips together – and separately. We have unrolled sleeping bags and slept directly on the scorpion and snake-infested ground of the Australian Outback with the most amazing stars (you know, because they are totally different down there!). I learned to ski in Austria from a German instructor who spoke no English. (And no, I didn’t speak German either.) We have climbed mountains in Patagonia, the Bugaboos and splitter cracks in Indian Creek. We have truly tested the boundaries of how much one can tolerate pooping in bags, not showering, and wearing the same clothes for more than seven days in a row while sleeping in this one little itty-bitty tent.
We have also done tons of less dramatic trips but the thing is, we love to take trips because it is something you always have to remember and laugh about, even if some part of it totally sucks. Eventually the sucky part DOES become funny. When we went to Patagonia I was in the middle of my MBA program and had a law class with a book that weighed at least 7 lbs. The boy lugged that huge dumb book around in his pack for the entire 10-day expedition! And it kept snowing! And the winds were insane! (But you can drink water directly from any stream or lake down there which is super cool.) When we were in Yosemite it was my first time climbing granite and I shredded all of the skin on my fingertips forcing us to do off-width climbing which it turns out the boy is quite fond of (p.s. this is the most awkward, uncomfortable climbing ever!).
So yeah, we have tons of great memories. But you know what we don’t have? Cable TV. New cars. A dining table. Night stands. Fashionable shoes or clothes…or even clothes that always match. (Although the boy thinks his cargo pants are totally fashionable.) The dishes we eat off of and pots and pans we cook with are almost all from Goodwill. I didn’t even buy them, but was actually given them from my brother when he got married just before I graduated college! My point is, we are too cheap to buy many, many things because we would simply rather use that money to go DO something.
All of this occurred to me when I dug out our camera for Costa Rica. This camera is dented and banged up from being in pockets, kayaks, dropped off climbs (still works!) and basically not being treated gently for even one day. (I don’t believe in camera bags for point & shoots because they are annoying and get in the way.) I remember buying the camera after our previous P&S developed an uncontrollable “shake” after one too many drops. But if even looking at this dinged up camera can instantly remind me of the alpine granite of the Bugaboos and doing the straddle of Pigeon Spire than you know it doesn’t NEED to be replaced.
My one caveat: what we will spend our $$$ on is our kittens made of gold. Quick story. A few weeks ago we noticed one of Dante’s big canine teeth was hanging pretty low. As if it was growing. And duh, I am not an idiot. Obviously it isn’t growing, it’s just falling out of his head. Dante, however, is maniacal at the vet. I almost always bleed when I have to take him, but I don’t care about that, I worry that he’s going to give himself a stroke or heart attack as he fights, scratches and bites to kill ALL THINGS when he is there.
Anyways, I decided to call a mobile vet here that my friend Sandy highly recommends. They came out yesterday to look at that tooth and had to pull THREE teeth! Apparently my cat has worse teeth than freaking METH HEADS! Poor guy. I feel like such an irresponsible kitten mom for not taking better care of his teeth.
So I do spend money taking care of my cancer kitten (2 time survivor!) and diabetics, I guess it’s just lucky that they will never need college funds.
Oh, and booze! I would rather not drink than drink crappy vodka. Last story, I promise! Last weekend we went to the liquor store to stock up. Because we were both out of “everything” which means wine and vodka for me, and bourbon and gin for the boy. We were checking out and the mother-f-ing clerks were totally judging us! I couldn’t believe it. I don’t know if they thought we were going home to drink it all that night, but don’t alcoholics buy the cheapest, crappiest booze anyways? And how could we not get that little baby bottle of Blanton’s, it looks just like the big guy!
So yeah, I’m totally psyched to go to a new country, try a new sport and maybe catch a sailfish or something too even if it means continuing to have alarm clocks, books (and guns) on the floor next to the bed since I’m too cheap to get a nightstand. Apparently you only have to spend 30-45 minutes to reel those big fish in! Don’t worry, I’d totally throw it back though, seafood is NASTY!