Monday, October 1, 2007

Where Would I Go?

Julie Pippert at Using My Words offered to interview any who asked, and after reading her two interview posts and a few other fascinating interviews at other blogs I was eager to answer a few questions myself.

I should've known the questions Julie asked me would require more than one sentence answers. I'm glad, I really am; I'm always glad for a reason to go on and on about the intricacies of my life and family dynamics. But I've decided that for each question to be treated with the respect it deserves I'll just have to give each one it's own post.

1. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and who would you go with? Why?

See, it's that why on the end that means I get to explain in full detail the steps of logic plus all the emotional surges that fuel the answer to this question.

I would travel Europe with My Hero. It's been a dream of ours since before we were married.

Europe is a land of history and romantic languages and long standing, civilized cultures and rich foods and beautiful, varied landscapes. It's the continent of Switzerland, a country I've dreamed of visiting since a photo of her mountains from the pages of my fourth grade history book took my breath away. And Germany with its rugged mountains and black forests and guttural tongue. And Italy...I'd spend several months in Italy. On my coffee table I have a book of Tuscany, filled with pages of pictures...rustic countryside, fresh vegetables harvested as a community, an old man riding a bike down a dirt lane under arches of trees. The pictures speak of a slow, simple, lovely way of life. And the British Isles, where I have roots. London and Oxford and Scotland and Ireland. We'd visit Sweden, too, where my husband's roots are strongest, and from where, I'm convinced, Peanut Butter gets his golden hair and ocean blue eyes. And Paris...I imagine Paris a busy, glamorous paced and amazing.

We have visited Spain, actually; My Hero and I went there for premarital counseling from dear friends who were missionaries there. It gave me a taste of Europe, for sure, with its towns of narrow, cobblestone streets and towering cathedrals... Visiting the throne room of Ferdinand and Isabella was surreal, imagining, knowing that centuries ago kings and queens and servants and soldiers had walked that very stone floor, climbed the narrow steps to look at the land from the vantage point of the stone tower.

We started a Europe savings fund our first year of marriage when we were both working, and had hopes of making the trip before we had children. Then My Hero made a career change and we moved back to New England from Illinois, and he began selling insurance, trying to get a foot in to the financial field. He worked at it for about six months, but generate an income he did not. We lived on my paltry teacher's salary and our Europe fund. (= We look back and laugh at it now. But I mean, if we HAD managed to do it, what would we have to look forward to when the kids are grown? (Lest you think My Hero is incapable or lazy, after the six month trial we discovered I was pregnant, and he found a job that offered health insurance, and started working two jobs, one by night and one by day, to pull us through. He worked that way for over a year, and then rose to management level where he could work just one job (with twice the stress, of course), and he's proven himself so good at what he does that he's rising quickly in the ranks at his company, and is wanted elsewhere.)

I would go with My Hero, even though there are so many others I'd love to include... A trip with my parents, with his parents, with all my brothers and sisters, or with my best friend and her husband, or with our Florida friends who make everything fun and interesting, or with my sister and her husband, who is from Europe...any of those would be amazing trips. But I guess if I had my top choice, for this particular travelling episode, it would have to be just My Hero and me. We're a team, and we have more patience for letting each other indulge in what interests them than we would for others travelling with us. We could do everything we wanted to do and travel at our own pace without having to adjust to suit "the others". We could spend months in each country if we wanted, walking down quiet country roads, experiencing the feel of each place, without feeling rushed to move on or to DO something. My Hero would take us skiing in Switzerland, which I have to think would put even Colorado's slopes to shame, and I would take him into every tiny dusty bookstore we encountered.

You may have noticed my travelling plans span across many many months of time. This is a dream, an ideal, obviously, not actual plans. I've always felt that if we wanted to truly experience Europe it would take a very long time, especially travelling at the pace I'd want to set. I kind of dread actually doing it...taking two weeks and breezing through as many countries as I wanted to visit. I don't think it would be very satisfying to me after all my daydreaming about how I'd really like to do it. But who knows? Someday we may be inexplicably independently wealthy, and then...


1 comment:

Julie Pippert said...

What an incredible story!

You know...luckily you had that savings, but yes, the trip would have been nice. Life has a funny sense of humor sometimes. ;)

I know you will make it to Europe.

We loved it there. So many amazing places, as you said.

I just love all the answers, learning about you, other people. It's beautiful.

Using My Words