I recently finished a book that had on its' cover a small symbol that said "get caught reading at sea". I thought perhaps there would be some prize involved, so I quickly donned my finest sailor uniform and made for the shipyard. While en route I wondered who would catch me? Are there reading police on the high seas now. I imagine myself on deck, reading, when suddenly a bullhorn shatters the ocean breeze, you in the sailor suit, you are surrounded, put down the book and slowly step away. Excitedly I jump up screaming, what have I won! The bull horn responds, a trip to the brigg and a public defender. At this point I'm thinking, this isn't a very good contest it's not even Ed McMahon behind the bull horn, and all the vacationers around me are old, wrinkly, scantly clad and should be attired in nothing less than full winter gear, I don't care how hot it is. I'm suddenly tackled by several very large men, who after some time and several tasings are able to restrain me. I am then dragged to an interrogation room to explain my interest in a "vampire" named "Edward". "Its not my book", I exclaim, "someone set me up". "Really", the man behind the lamp croons in a french accent while smoking a cheap cigarette, "Then you won't mind if I tell you how it ends", "YOU BASTARD!! you wouldn't dare". I interrupt my own thought in mid stride and decide I better read the fine print on this whole "get caught reading at sea" notion half expecting it to read "get caught reading at sea"......"and do hard time". Turns out it was some cruise line promotion, and an ineffective one I might add as the promoted cruise was scheduled for 2004. Hope it was fun. Anyway It got me to thinking about how stupid people are...(I could just leave it there, but for purposes of this post we will narrow it down a bit)...with their vacations. There seems to be this drive in some portion of the population to do nothing, once they have achieved this goal they quickly grow restless and want something to do. Let's examine this drive to do nothing, and how it applies to vacations, which countless numbers do on a regular basis.
"I need a vacation!" one exclaims. I just want to go on a cruise or get a room with an ocean view and sit by the pool all day and do nothing. This is where they lose me. If you don't want to do anything try sitting on your couch all weekend vegetating, it doesn't cost you a thing. Instead one books an Oceanside hotel room in some exotic country for a few days and in their time there sees little more than their room, the pool, the inside of a book and the back of their eyelids, all at the expense of thousands of dollars. I am a big reader, I'm always reading a book, but when I'm on vacation reading takes a back seat to whatever adventures the vacation offers that are not usually available to me,(legal adventures people, lets keep it legal). Have we forgotten how to have a good time(legally). I am often asked the question "what do you do with your days off? asked by a perplexed inquirer who can't seem to fathom what they would do with themselves if they had a few days off. I now answer this question with the following, "lots of things" it depends on the season, the day and so on, after smoking the mushrooms that grow in my backyard entire days seem to vanish, but I rarely find myself bored. I have become convinced that we are loosing our innovation, our sense of adventure, does anybody have a hobby anymore? If you have children I withdraw the question. At the end of this vacation our example usually comes home tired of their vacation and just wants to get back home to their routine. The routine is safe, soft, snugly and from what I'm hearing, boring. If I may be so bold, if you want to "do nothing" throw up a hammock in the back yard and have at it. But if you going "on vacation" come back with stories, pictures, scars and foreign currency, but lets leave the diseases where we found them, unless they are temporary and particularly funny. when you next have a few days off I expect something better than "I'm bored", dig deep and report back to this blog thus inspiring others to make the most of their days.
Alas, this probably won't inspire anybody, but it did keep you busy for a few minutes.