Getting “away” has always been a priority and simple pleasure in my life. My husband and I have been blessed (or cursed) with a more than healthy supply of nomadic blood, so luckily we share this need. It’s not always easy to support our “habit”, but we always seem to find a way. We’ve ended up borrowing a car, camping, sleeping in the car, travelling with jerry cans of fuel in the back of a stationwagon, over heavily potholed roads – all just to get away.
So coming back from holiday, I’ve been trying to sum up, why we actually do this and I’ve ended up with a notebook full of my life history in holidays, which would bore you to no end. So I decided to ask my kids, what they think of holidays, because they often have this uncanny act of simplifying things.
1. Why do we go on holiday?
Littlest: Because it’s fun!
Medium: To have a break from work and it’s fun and to relax. Being together!!!
2. What do people need to have a good holiday?
Medium: A Good mood + A place to have a holiday + the family, to be together.
Aren’t they clever?
As a child I went on many wonderful holidays, disproportionate to the amount that my parents earned. I have a wealth of memories of adventures, experiences and laughter with my family. There always seemed to be enough money to go somewhere together. We did a round trip of South Africa, we travelled through Zimbabwe. Stayed in simple accommodation but went on boat trips out on Lake Kariba. But even if it was just going to the beach, when life got too much at home, we’d escape. Take a breath of fresh air and return.
One of the places we went on short weekend breaks to, had these little prefab houses on a farm on the Eastern Cape Coast (South Africa). No flushing toilets, we collected fresh water outside at a water tank to wash and cook with. But the front prefabricated wall lifted open and you’d have a full uninterrupted view of the lagoon which pushed out to the sea, behind the huge sanddunes, where the neverending empty beaches lay waiting for you. What more did we need? During the day we would swim, walk on the beach, read, have braais* and at night (if the bushbabies behaved) we were lulled to sleep by the sound of the sea.
For some reason, I have this urge to tell you, it needn’t be grandiose, fancy, luxurious or for very long. But getting away just does one good. We had an awesome holiday. We kept the accommodation simple, but spoilt ourselves with the location. Friends have commented on my holiday email and said – “you look HAPPY” and – I’m sure you’re “Feeling relaxed and in your centre again”. And that’s it isn’t it? It’s about pressing PAUSE and letting your soul catch up with the rest of you. It’s about seeing your life from a distance – getting perspective on life.
It’s about being with your family. Having fun as a family. And all you need is a place to go, a good mood and suitcases! 😀
(*braai – South African word for barbeque)