Daily Prompt 1/8/2016 | Keeping up with the Jones’
“Tell us about the one luxury item you wish you could afford, in as much detail as you can. Paint a picture for us.”
An item? No. I want experiences.
Growing up, my family never took many vacations. I have photos in a photo album of my mom, grandfather, and I in Florida, but I was just a baby. I have no memory of the trip, aside from a few photographs, and some old VHS footage.
Each year, until I was around 14 or 15 years old, my mom and I would drive to Hartford, Connecticut to visit with our cousins and a few days, but I never considered those trips to be much of a vacation. We went to the water park a few times, but most of my memories consist of sleeping on a creaky pull-out couch in their basement, and playing kickball with the neighborhood kids in the street, which is something I could have done at home, only afterwards, I could retreat to my own bed.
No, we never went on vacations when I got older. Our neighboring town had several fun parks and water parks, where all the high school kids would get jobs, and we would go there a few times each summer (we were too poor for season passes), and that was always great, but it was a 15 minute drive from home. Not a vacation.
We never stayed in hotels with overly chlorinated pools, or even really left the state at all. We never traveled to sunny, sandy locations to escape the Maine winters, or even up north a bit more to try our hands at skiing. I never got to hold a koala, or smell a vibrant, exotic flower. Nope. We just stayed home.
It isn’t my mom’s fault, I’m sure she would have loved to get away. But we were poor. I understand that now, especially since I have my own child to think about. Kids are expensive! If you’re living just at your means, then an exotic cruise or vacation probably isn’t in the books for you either. And it sucks.
I want my son to fly in an airplane. Or even take a train. I want him to visit ancient cities, tour museums, and sit on sandy beaches. I want him to try exotic foods, and see beautiful flowers that you can’t find here in the US. I want him to have these experiences that I never had, so that he will have a better understanding of the beauty that the whole world possess, not just what lies in his hometown.
That is the one luxury I wish for more than anything. Travel. Experience.
Thanks for reading, friends.