I'd love to say I took a vacation when we spent a week in July on the Washington/Oregon coast in our RV...my husband did... while I had more of a writer's working vacation. I had deadlines, but took a few breaks now and then from work to do an activity. Kind of how the last few years have gone...a day here or there, a holiday weekend but taking work...
What stopped me from an all-out vacation? Contracts, wedding planning, duties that couldn't wait for two non-profits, and a couple of proposals editors were waiting on. But here's a little of how a working vacation goes for me...
|Seaquest State Park, Washington State. The hike was gorgeous.|
|On the dinner cruise.|
Timing. The timing was all off for me this year. It was our first vacation in eight years due to the economy. I'd have done better with a vacation later in the fall or smack dab in winter, in between books. Definitely after my commitment with judging books (I get paid to do that each summer) and after my daughter's wedding. Two things that took up most of my summer, time, and energy. Oh, did I mention I also started my college classes three weeks before that vacation time to get my genealogy degree?
|The wedding prep...|
|Yes, I really do work on the road while he drives, as long as I don't get motion sick from shadow flickers. Ugh.|
Travel. Taking work along was a given because I had to fulfill contracts on time. This timing and type of travel wasn't as conducive as I thought it would be. I struggled with motion sickness when tall trees flipped shadows over my screen or page while moving. So I moved to the back of the RV and dropped the curtains. But then I'd still get bounced all over the place. I often use a dish cupboard liner to keep my laptop stuck to the RV table so it won't go sliding off onto the floor. I use a wireless keyboard in my lap. My mouse is on a mousepad that just happens to stick to the table all on its own. But the mouse likes to fly around sometimes. I've gotten good at reacting and catching a flying mouse.
|The Columbia Gorge sternwheeler dinner cruise. Well worth the two-mile walk round trip to get there from the RV camp.|
What did we do? Hubby and I like to hike and try unusual restaurants and experiences. So we did hike a couple of times in state parks. We did take an antique train ride (impromptu when we heard the whistle near our campground). Visiting the Tillamook Cheese Factory was a definite tourist trap experience, but hey, it's cheesy and you have to have at least one of those on a vacation. We did walk over two miles roundtrip to catch a sternwheeler on the Columbia Gorge. That sternwheeler had a lovely dinner cruise. And we did pick blackberries that we made into chocolate blackberry ice cream for a spontaneous family dinner the night after we came home. Some very nice experiences.
|Visiting Kelsey, she camped with us one night and then we took an antique steam train ride just because we heard the whistle blow!|
|Couldn't miss the blackberries!|
|Cheesy, but we had to stop...|
|We found a fun cave while hiking.|
|Hiking near the Columbia Gorge|
|Mariah is now married! Beautiful bride and wedding.|
|Muse: You try tutoring Writer on summer schedule!|
As writers, we still have to meet our commitments. I hope to take a real vacation in the near future, but I'll be honest and tell you I don't think it's happening any time soon. Although, I'm saving my frequent flier miles working toward a bucket list research trip to Scotland. Hubby's not really looking forward to that one. Just like moving camp spots every day isn't my cup of tea, researching Scottish history and ancestors isn't his. But we still will find fun things to do together to build relationship and memories.
Final word. Boy, do I have more experiences I can draw on for books! I'm glad I've taken a day now and then or a few hours to keep putting life and experiences into my tool chest. Without them, I'd have little to draw on to build stories and characters.