Well I’d been waffling all week about what to write for this post. It's summer, so I wanted to talk about something timely. I’ve had a variety of vacation experiences in my life, from the fabulous to the horrific, but nothing was leaping to mind. Then I heard a word that made it easy.
This is a concept that some marketing genius invented a year or two ago, though I'd tried to forget I'd ever heard it.. The media has decided that this is a great new thing, to bring families closer together and encourage participation in our communities.
What it means is, “We’re too broke to go anywhere, but we can’t get cash for our vacation days. So we’ll take the time off and stick around home. We’ll do some local stuff so it only sucks little rocks instead of big ones.” Don’t even get me started on the other word they used, “home-tel.” That one’s just too moronic to contemplate. I was dashing to the bathroom when I heard that and I really hope it was a spoof.
So I guess my summer plans are suddenly trendy. Last summer was a big vacation, and this year, with astronomical gas prices, there’s just no hope of getting the hell out of Dodge. So, yes, we’ve talked about ways to make the summer suck a little less. Our kids are teens, so their idea of entertainment revolves more around friends than around anything else anyway, but yeah, we’d decided to make it a point to take in a couple of small Renaissance Fairs, and a few local museums that we’ve overlooked in recent years. Maybe let each of the boys drag a friend along, just so they have a good time too. And to think, we figured all this out without knowing there was a word for it. However did we manage that?
This is a new word for a very old concept. It’s called making do, people. And it’s how ordinary folks always have and always will cope with reality. Obviously, the pundits and politicians who are telling us how great this is never had to sit on the back porch with a homemade margarita and pretend it was the beach. Or convince a couple of kids that the sprinkler is as much fun as the water park.
On the other hand? It IS kind of cool to rediscover forgotten treasures in your own part of the world. Detroit has a world-class art museum, and my kids have never seen it. It’s free one day a month. Guess which day we’ll be going? Minor league baseball is actually more fun to watch, because it isn’t so slowed down for television. And when you come down to it, time is a bigger investment than money, anyway. Doing something, anything, makes more memories than sitting and having someone bring you pretty pink drinks.
Or so I will be telling myself all summer long.
So anybody else have cool vacation plans? I'm willing to live vicariously.