I'm lucky. I get to see things like this every day in the area I live: Sonoma County, California. I was once commenting on a friend's blog that I was envious of families who pack up and move to places for the summer. First of all, it's hard, even in these times, to be able to afford that in California, but my friend nicely reminded me, "Sharon, but don't you live in a place people go to on vacation?" And my comment was, "But if you're there every day, it doesn't seem like a vacation." She was right. And so was I.
I subscribe to a number of travel blogs and am tempted by the photos of places I won't likely see in my lifetime. Exotic places. Colorful places. For the few seconds I read about them, and lusciously scan the photos, I am there, knowing that's as far as it gets.
I look out at my garden, and my chickens and see work, even though the beautiful grape-laden hills are all around me. There is the sawdust to move, the chicken feed to empty into the feeding cans, the weeding and dead-heading in the garden. And darn those zucchinis - how come they seem to blow up overnight and go from gourmet table fare to chicken food? You don't pick them? The plant thinks it's done and goes home to the vegetable Heaven somewhere. I stew over my tomato plants that just decide to die. Hello? Can't you give me a clue why you are turning brown? Too cold? Too much water? Your buddy over here has been producing for weeks, and you decide to go home. Not nice.
Not every wonderful place on my list has blue water, umbrellas and lounges. Or spas. But most of them do have something to do with water. At the Kenwood Inn, for instance, there is this huge waterwheel that goes around and around, and I love falling to sleep to it on the few times I have stayed. I wrote a story taking place there so I had a good enough excuse to indulge myself when my finance allow. Some day. When I've sold a bajillion copies of all my books.
These have been very challenging and stressful days for me. I find taking a mental time out and going some place for a 5-minute vacation a necessary evil. Is there some dark lurking prince behind one of those palm trees? Who knows. Afterall, it isn't me that's traveling to those places, but my heroines. Looking for love in all the right places.
Where do you go when you like to escape the world?