A friend asked me recently what was the best trip I have ever taken. Not that I have travelled everywhere there is to travel, but I had a hard time answering her. (In fact, I don’t think I actually did.)
The thing is that each trip I have gone on has been wonderful in its own way. Some have been exceptional, but all have been worth every penny spent. I don’t think I have been anywhere that I would never want to go again.
My parents were great believers in the value of travel. We went camping all around BC when I was a kid, and there were frequent visits to Alberta to see all the relatives. As I got older and there was more money, we travelled a bit further afield: California (Disneyland!), Hawaii, across Canada to Québec and back through the northern US states . In high school, there were teacher-chaperoned trips offered each year, so I went to Russia one year and to Paris another. I absolutely adored Europe. I was hooked.
I did a French course in France as a university student, fell even more in love with Europe and specifically with France, then came back to Canada pretty much bilingual. A couple of years after graduation and into my teaching career in French Immersion, back I went around Europe, hitting the hot spots of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg (not necessarily in that order). I repeated much of that trip several years later with my new husband.
Travel was put on hold for a while, due to buying a house and having a baby. But when the marriage dissolved, travel returned to my life, this time with Darling Daughter as my travel companion.
Our first mother-daughter voyage was to France, and that worked out so well that we have made it a point to go somewhere together every summer. We have travelled together to Toronto and Ottawa, New York and Washington DC, England and Scotland, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. One summer I bought my townhouse and with all the additional expenses involved, I couldn’t quite manage a trip for the two of us, but I did send DD on a school trip to Spain without me. And last summer, I had just purchased my BMW, so I again felt I couldn’t quite afford a trip for two, and besides, DD was taking university classes all summer. I was able to swing a four-day weekend to Las Vegas with Porsche Guy, however, much to DD’s chagrin. (I told her that it didn’t count because I didn’t enjoy it.)
Now she and I are in negotiations for our next trip. I always worry about the money aspect, but I do make a comfortable salary and my house is paid for (even if the car isn’t!), so as long as I’m careful and budget within my means, we’ll be able to do it. We’re thinking about going to Greece, since DD has taken a few courses on the art and architecture of ancient Greece and is totally enamoured of the place. And of course, how can you go to Greece without going to Istanbul, Turkey to see the Hagia Sophia, especially if you love ancient Greek art and architecture? So here’s hoping that we do pull it off and get there!
So, which has been my favourite trip thus far? I still can’t choose – but I do know that you never regret the trips you take, only the ones you don’t take, so I’m gonna keep travelling!