Oct 04, 2005
Back in my stressed out corporate days, I used to take an annual week off by myself in the mountains -- sometimes in summer, sometimes in fall. The routine was predictable: first two days of complete befrazzlement as my tensed-up internal springs wound down, then a couple of days trying to do too many "vacation" things at once (go hiking, smoke cigars, take a nap, buy art supplies, teach myself to paint with watercolors, write twenty letters, compose some music), followed by a couple of relaxed days and finally a day of real peace before it was time to head home.
I haven't had such a vacation in a long time, but I'm going to do one this November. I'm a little scared about what my mind will do once it has all that quiet to expand into -- seeing how I've been out of practice at long rests. But if it doesn't kill me, I know it's going to be great.
Do you go on solo vacations? How do you find your mental rest, in general?
I go somewhere warm and tropical where I can order drinks from where my ass lays. Nothing like being waited on hand and foot to make me feel like jello. Being semi-drunk all week long does help too.
Speaking of the mountains...we are bound for Boone this weekend. Looking forward to some hiking.
Posted by: Di | Oct 4, 2005 7:59:42 PM
I'm quite happy to do solo vacations. I used to do a week of diving at least once or twice a year. I haven't done any long solo vacations lately, since I now get plenty of time to myself travelling for work (weekly flights from RDU to SFO and back give me lots of time to just rest and read and think).
Posted by: AndyHat | Oct 4, 2005 9:30:19 PM
These days when I take a vacation I try to eliminate as much stress from it as possible. Seems like a lot of people take a vacation and a fair ammount of that time is worse than work time. Hassle at airports, bad lodging. There are ways to go 'on retreat' and recharge. Very beneficial. I think it is a good thing for everyone to do it solo now and then also.
Posted by: Jim | Oct 5, 2005 9:34:03 AM
For this upcoming vacation in the mountains, I'm thinking about going without cell phone and internet for the week. To reduce the stress of that change, I imagine I'll need to let people know in advance to plan not to reach me, so I don't worry about people trying to reach me and failing.
Posted by: Phil | Oct 5, 2005 1:48:30 PM
for me, the best solo vacations are far away and fairly active, especially physically active. i did a week horsebackriding in ireland (there was one other person & a guide, but i didn't know either before, and we were together only when we were on horseback, not at night). i did a week alone in ireland at a posh hotel, exploring the region by car during the day, followed by a run and then a massage (or pedicure, etc etc), and then an extravagant four course meal (all dressed up!) with a good book and bottle of wine. king sized bed next to peaceful falling water. six days and nights of that routine was hard to leave behind. i highly recommend solo vacations.
Posted by: e | Oct 6, 2005 2:27:14 PM
How appropriate you post this while I'm on vacation: probably why I have time to post. :) Most vacations, I visit friends, but travel by myself. I'd like to take a couple weeks sometime and just drive; gods know whether that's ever to happen. I've never been overseas on vacation either. And I've rarely had a vacation that was stress-free, although I'd like one.
Posted by: Joseph H. Vilas | Oct 6, 2005 4:02:25 PM
I am a big fan of the solo vacation. As more and more of my friends have joined the ranks of those employed, married and/or with children, it has become increasingly difficult to find folks with whom to travel. And I do like my travel! One of my favorite solo trips ever was a six-week backpacking trip I took to Europe before starting a new job--it was my first major trip by myself, and I reveled in the self-discovery, immersion in all things I love and utter peacefulness of it. I grew lonely from time to time, but was able to chat with other folks in French or English when need be, and the loneliness never lasted very long.
Posted by: Lisa | Oct 8, 2005 5:44:59 PM
I had a guest travel by herself, just to think things over. She found that it gave her time to re-think her future and where she was heading.
She found Hillcrest Guest House, St. John Us Virgin Islands, the perfect place to feel human again.
Posted by: Phyllis Hall | Oct 11, 2005 7:20:23 PM
I live in St. John and would highly recommend it for a solo vacation IF you want to really relax that is. There is not much night life here (a little but not much) but if you feel the call to unwind, St. John is a WONDERFUL place. Beautiful snorkeling, hiking (2/3 of the island is a national park), eclectic people, etc. If I can provide any info that would be of value, please feel free to contact me.
Posted by: mermaid | Oct 12, 2005 1:07:37 PM