My Summer Vacation

School's out for summer!  But that doesn't mean summer vacation for everyone.  While my kid may have the summer off (which I have filled with lots of fun stuff like camp and trips with both sets of his grandparents), I still have to work.  My "vacation" this year consists of a 4 day weekend revolving around my son's birthday.  I may have the days/time, but I don't have the finances for any wonderful trip this year.  (Was it a year ago that we traveled to Disney World?  My blog posts of 2016 tell me so.)  I keep thinking next year...I'd like to travel to Disneyland.  Or take a cruise to Alaska.  Or visit the Bay of Fundy.  (For some reason I'm really obsessed about this and it's probably the most realistic of all the vacation plans I have tied up in my head.)

But plans of next summer are just that.  I still need that sofa for the living room.  (Anyone have ANY leads on a sofa that is NOT a plain brown, tan or gray?)  I will probably need a new car.  (At 83,000 miles and 9 years little things are starting to "pop" up.  Sooner or later something big will "pop" up and then I'll be in trouble.)

Just because I am not going away is not a reason to enjoy the summer.  After all my son is away for several weeks (currently at camp to be followed by weeks with grandparents), which means no tween angst in the house.  (That is reason enough for celebrations, right?  I do miss my son when he's away, but I don't miss the messes and the laundry that he magically generates.)

One of the best parts of my "summer vacation" is the summer commute.  No more school means no more early treks to school.  While I LOVE that my son participates in music programs (which I encouraged), getting him out the door by 7:25 or so is ALWAYS a challenge.  Even though I get up early, I'm always in a rush.  When he doesn't have to be out the door, I can slow down a little.  (Although little things do keep popping up.)  Although in the summer, I'm supposed to be at work earlier (8:30 instead of 9, but with dropping off the kid at school, I'm usually at the office before 8:30 anyway), I leave the house later.  (I'm blessed with summer hours, through July and August.  I work an hour MORE Monday-Thursday and leave the office at noon on Friday.  Or at least close to noon.  No matter how hard I try, there's not getting escaping at twelve on the dot.  Truth be told even though I am "off" after twelve, there is still that pesky report that needs to be turned in by the end of the day on Friday and the information I need for that report usually doesn't arrive until late Friday afternoon or evening.  So I still end up checking in and "working" when I am not working.  But I am NOT complaining about that.  I still have extra hours in the afternoon to do what I want before dedicating another hour or so to work.  For me it's a win!)

This morning I didn't get in the car until nearly 7:50 and I was still in the office parking lot by 8:10.  The let up of morning traffic (nothing seems to be able to stop the evening traffic jams) actually is a little vacation for me.  There are no school buses to get stuck behind.  No kids crossing the street.  And overall there are less people on the road.  Maybe I'm not going away for the summer, but it seems like plenty of other people are.  And that translate in a mini-commute vacation for me.

I think anyone who deals with the ugly daily commute would agree; less traffic is less stress.  It's a mini-mind vacation.  No matter who you are, stress is all around; any break from that IS a mental vacation.


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