Which do you prefer – destinations or journeys?
I’m not talking about life philosophy or anything profound. I’m talking about vacations, and I legit want to know which you like – destination vacations or journey vacations.
Destination vacations are all about the “there.” What you do once you reach the point of vacation – either a weekend in Dallas going to Six Flags and a Rangers game or five days in Cancun sitting on the beach while someone brings you drinks. It is all about where you are.
Journey vacations are about the “going.”
Cross-country road trips or traveling through Texas to see how many different types of wildflowers you can find. These are the car rides that seemingly never end or the camping trips moving from one site to another. Journey vacations are about what you see while you get there, even if there is just back home.
Before I met my husband and when my kids were little, I would have laughed at a journey vacation.
I was convinced destination was the only way to go. I was all about jumping on a plane in Lubbock and getting off in the hellhole of LaGuardia to see NYC for 68 hours before heading home exhausted and broke, but we had a blast watching fireworks on the Brooklyn Bridge. The thought of being trapped in a car with two kids made me twitchy, and a journey was not going to happen.
I didn’t appreciate the joy of a journey vacation until after marriage.
After the first cross-country trip, we took three months after getting married. Before we left, I thought we were crazy to think Texas to Virginia and back in 10 days in a Corolla with a 10-year-old, a 7-year-old, and a dog would be okay. It was a stressful trip for many reasons, but we did it two years in a row.
I loved how much we were able to show the kids – like standing on the banks of the Ohio River and talking about the Underground Railroad. Or us going to St Louis and learning about Manifest Destiny. There was a destination at the end with precious family, but we fit in a lot of “journey” into those trips. Ten years later, some of those memories are still my most precious. And I conveniently forgot about the number of stops we had to make for a kid or the dog to get out and pee again.
The kids say they prefer destinations because they have more fun.
It is immediate gratification to be at DisneyWorld or the beach. When they are older with their kids, I hope they will remember the trips in the camper where we saw so many different parts of Texas. Or the car rides that took them from the Mississippi River to the Great Divide and what they learned in between.
As we plan our vacation this summer (beach destination), we are also planning a journey next summer from Lubbock to South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana (because I’m a wannabe Dutton), and places far from here. If you’ve done something similar, share your thoughts.