This post is by Nancy Jardine.
“You’re going to where?” Silence ensues…. Some people like holidaying in familiar places with no intentions of trying out anything new. Others prefer to seek out new destinations and try out new foods and experience unfamiliar customs.
My family tend to fall into the latter category. For four decades my husband travelled the world for business reasons and my daughters and I joined him at some of the locations during our school vacations (them being pupils; me a teacher). Other family holidays were to locations just because none of us had ever been there.
As my daughters became adults a friendly family rivalry evolved by the time they were choosing their own holiday destinations. The high point was when both daughters decided to experience more of what the world had to offer during a ‘gap’ year after they finished their university degrees.
D 1: “Dad, have you ever been to Ushuaia?” Knowing quite well he hadn’t D 1 awaited some cheeky quip.
Dad: “Ha! Nope, but I’ll see if I can wangle a trip to Tierra Del Fuego before you get there. At least I know where it is!”
So off went D1 on her world trip. Her first landing point out of the UK was Rio De Janeiro after which she spent a few months investigating pretty well the whole of South America. Then it was off to New Zealand and navigating the globe in a westerly direction for the rest of that ‘year out’ before the world of work beckoned. During it she went to a good number of places Dad had never been to. Many drool moments from Dad.
That same year D2 decided to spend time on the northern North American continent. Dad had been to many US states, and some places in Canada but…
D2: “Dad, I’ve got it all planned! Have you ever been to Alaska?” Again, knowing full well he had not been to that part of the US. There were some lovely grunts in the background and some evil leers behind her back.
Dad: “No, I haven’t but I have been to Newfoundland.”
D2: “Well, I’ll be spending 5 months working in Vancouver, Canada, then I’m moving north to the Yukon for a while and I’ll be sure to pop across into Alaska. You’ve not been there?” Massive teasing going on now. “After that I’m going to head east in a VW Camper Van to Hudson Bay, Nova Scotia, and fly home from Toronto.” Dad had been to only a few of the places on her trip. D2’s road trip right across Canada had plenty of diversions to include all provinces/territories. Excessive drool moments from Dad even though he was journeying to new locations like India and Indonesia that year.
Me? I was teaching 11-12 year olds by day and living vicariously via scary emails at night as I plotted everyone else’s locations on a world map and prayed that they survived sky diving, and walks across glaciers, and visits to volcanoes and mudflats and …swamps full of alligators and crocodiles and big grizzly bear encounters. I did, however, get some lovely photos of partially labelled locations to whet my appetite.
The years went by, the destinations varied and the friendly family ‘one-up-manship’ continued. But change is inevitable…or is it?
A few months ago my husband celebrated his 70th birthday but the strangest thing is that he now doesn’t want to fly anywhere. When the subject of a special birthday vacation came up he totally surprised me by declaring he wanted to experience a cruise ship holiday. This type of event would have been anathema to him decades ago but hey! we’re both a lot older. Warming up to the idea of a cruise I thought of the lovely possibilities. A cruise on the River Nile was something I yearned for years ago, or one on the Rhine, or maybe to Barbados, or the far east… Warm places, exotic food, blue skies and red gold sunsets – Exciting!
Hubby: “I’ve found the perfect cruise.”
Me: “Fabulous! Where does it go?”
Hubby: “I’ve chosen one which leaves from Rosyth.” (near Edinburgh, Scotland)
Well, that took flights right out of the itinerary. To embark the ship all we need to do is take a coach trip of about three hours to Edinburgh to reach the cruise liner.
Me: “Okay! So where are we cruising to?”
Hubby: (huge smile on his face) “Greenland!”
Nobody in the family has ever been to Greenland.
The above photo is from Wikimedia because I don’t yet have any photos. It is labelled as “Night shot of Tasiilaq, eastern Greenland in the summer.” Note that it’s still a wee bitty icy. I confess to being somewhat surprised by his declaration but once over the initial ‘cold’ shock I warmed to the idea. A flight we’d taken this time last year from London to Las Vegas flew over Greenland and northern Canada and the sights below my cabin window were breathtaking. (I blogged about that trip last year, one of the super highlights being a short meet-up with fellow Wranglers blogger Mike Staton! I can hardly believe it was almost a year since that happened.)
We’re also visiting three locations in Iceland – new to hubby and me but not to D1.
And then we’ll be stopping at two places in Norway. We’ve all been to Stavanger and Bergen, but Olden and Alesund will be new to me and I know I’ll love them. (D2’s visited them during her time on the Tall Ships sailing competitions and even went further north to Trondheim but Hubby and I have decided to conveniently forget about that! 😉 )
I won’t be taking copious amounts of sun dresses for the trip but I will be packing my thick ski jacket.
If you’ve read any of my contemporary mysteries you’ll already know that I’ve written in lots of destinations that I’ve visited with hubby – locations in the US, European cities like Amsterdam, Paris, Heidelberg, Barcelona and then there’s the Caribbean and the Middle East.
Where do you think I might be writing about later this autumn? That’s if my trip proves to be inspirational! (Look forward to me sharing lots of photos on another blog post, even though I’m a lousy photographer.)
We leave in three days so I’d best start packing the evening wear for the fine dining and my winter woollies for exploring the destinations! I’m not sure about hubby yet, but I’m now very excited about this new type of holiday to virgin ‘airts and pairts’.
Nancy Jardine writes contemporary mysteries in fabulous worldwide locations. Get a taster of new horizons as you solve the mysteries.
She also writes Romano/ British historical fiction and time travel adventures, set in the 1st and 3rd centuries A.D.
She’s a member of the Romantic Novelists Association, the Scottish Association of Writers and the Federation of Writers Scotland. She’s published by Crooked Cat Books and has delved into self publishing.
You can find her at these places:
Amazon Author page http://viewauthor.at/mybooksandnewspagehere