FARAWAY PLACES . . . .
Back in my salad days, my mother had a recording of a song I loved to play:Faraway places, with strange-sounding names,
Far away over the sea,
Those faraway places with the strange-sounding names,
Are calling, calling, me.
The tune was slow and near-mournful. I don’t know why I liked it, because we moved so often when I was in elementary school that I learned new town names and street names and people names every year. Just when I got them down pat, we moved and I had to start all over again. Didn’t take many moves before I learned to dread packing up and going to the next place.I’ve never had wanderlust—travel is fine, but not high on my list of things I love to do.
This comes to mind as I prepare for a short trip—well, actually, the trip is long: Indiana to Minneapolis to Phoenix, via air travel—but the stay in Mesa, AZ is short, only four days. My journey to the Valley of the Sun will allow me to visit with my oldest daughter, snag a few rays to boost my Vitamin D content, and shut out of my mind (even a few days’ worth) the images of snow, more snow, and still more snow.When I worked as a paralegal, I traveled fairly often—conferences, workshops—some in Indiana, some in big cities around the U.S. To make the event go smoothly, I kept a list in my computer of things I needed to pack (both long and short trips, warm weather or cool) and another list of things to do before I left home (stopping mail, turning off appliances, lowering the thermostat for the furnace).
This time I started a list on a steno pad—am onto the second page—keep adding things I know I can’t possibly do without. Really? As if Phoenix is the end of the universe and there are no stores?The To-Do list is shorter—I have a friend picking up my mail, which is now, alas, mostly ads and other missives I can do without; I use almost no appliances (microwaves go off by themselves); and the thermostat had better stay right where it is because the temps here in northern Indiana will remain down in the chilly-to-downright-frigid range while I’m away.
Confession—I do not like to travel. But I like being there—wherever “there” is. When we get the teleportation business straightened out, and it’s only a matter of “Beam me up, Scotty!” I’ll sign on.
In the meantime, short trips, not too far away.