Is Vacation Worth It?



Last week I got home from a couple of weeks in Maine.  Since Carter and I came home in the middle of the week I kind of eased back into real life, not accepting any thing that might be construed as work.  But today is Monday and so I can hide no more.  Time to go full-blown back into “work.”  I have to say work in parenthesis because I have been on sabbatical from my “Job” for a year and a half.  Even my job was more of a hobby and truly part-time.


During my sabbatical I have been the Board Chair for the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina, a place that I have a great passion for.  My term continues for another year, but it is a “job” I find so satisfying that it is not like work, even though it is a lot of hours.


Before I left for Maine I had discussions with my friends at Durham Magazine and I agreed to come back to work in the smallest possible way.  I am going to be writing a column for the magazine.  The good news is that I get to write about people who are doing really good things for Durham and have interesting stories.  If you know someone like that I would love to hear from you.


Between the Food Bank, the magazine, church, Carter’s school, Russ, Carter and Shay Shay I have a few projects I need to get done.  This being the first Monday after vacation I made a list of everything I could think of that I had been ignoring that required my attention.  Only 42 things, then I just stopped thinking.  I dropped Carter off at volleyball tryouts, made four phone calls and sent nine e-mails to set up more phone calls, went to a meeting in Raleigh, made ten phone more calls, sent sixteen more e-mails and I was able to cross six things off the list.  Then I thought of five more things that needed to be added to the list.  I’m down one thing!


Suddenly, the carefree days of vacation in Maine are flooding back.  Days when I did not respond to any e-mail, or take any phone calls.  Days when I read, needle pointed and played games without any guilt.  Days when I made new friends, who had not already heard all my stories and ate food prepared by others.  Days when I did not touch a washer or dryer and learned I could paddle board without falling in the lake.  Did the world stop when I did?  No.  Did the work still pile up?  Well, yes.  Was taking time off from real life worth it?  Damn, Yes.


No matter what, work is still going to be there.  Whether I do it every day or do it one week on and off another.  Whether I get paid for it or I do it for free.  Whether I think it up or someone else thinks I should do it.  Work will exist.  But those days of monotony are not the ones memories are made of.  The special days away from home, with your family are the markers that make life special.  So to answer the question is vacation worth it?  You better believe it is.  When do I get to go away again?  I’m putting it on my list.

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