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Wednesday, July 13, 2011


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.

Bull Puckey.

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.


Katalina Leon said...

I hope this will be a very memorable summer.
We scaled way back also, and I'm actually enjoying myself more. We're doing a lot more social gatherings than paid activities. I think I'll remember this summer as the summer I laughed a lot.

Amber Skyze said...

Us too, Cindy. We're doing the Stay-Cation. Our daughter wants to go to the Mystic Aquarium because they've made it a hands-on experience this year. That's about all we'll be doing. Maybe a trip in Sept to NH, depending on gas prices.

jean hart stewart said...

I never knew the word vacation when I was growing up. Couldn't afford it. As a result on the long summers we visited my grandmother and getting to know her was one of the biggest influences in my life. This year my daughter and I will be driving to the desert for a few days of utter relaxation..but I'll have my computer along.

Paris said...

I just can't get enough of the spin factor--yeah, right. I'm really tired of listening to the media invent new words to describe stuff. Sometimes the only word for rain is rain.

We'll be sticking close to home and not even thinking about a vacation this year. Maybe in the fall, if gas gets more reasonable we'll take some weekend jaunts but we aren't planning anything major.

Angela Kay Austin said...

My family would pack up the car, and take road trips to visit other family, and of course we stayed with them. Is that a "hometel?"

I love sitting around with family, and beginning sentences with "Remember when..."

Tina Donahue said...

Wow - what's a vacation? I can't recall the last time I even took one. At the end of this month I have jury duty which may take me away from my EDJ for two weeks. Ugh.

Janice said...

This summer, we're hitting the movie theater. With one great hit after another and most what we want to see--why not?

And it's cool in there too!


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