I love vacations. But I also love the sigh of relief that happens when I can sit down in my own house, put my feet up and snuggle with my dogs. The vacation after the vacation.
After spending the weekend in Manhattan with friends, that's what I needed. The afternoon off to recover.
I think that says something about my vacation style. My husband calls it "vacation mode" and it frightens him at times. That desire to do more and see more and go, go, go. I've gotten better over the years, but I still have to remind myself to rest sometimes.
And every time I go on vacation, there's always that one night when I have nightmares about my dog Thor running away while we're out of town. The nightmare is based in experience.
Thor is a rescue. A loving but very shy dog. Friendly and curious about people, but not trusting of their motives or intentions. A year and a half ago we were on a 24-hour overnight to see a friend get married in San Francisco, and Thor escaped from the dog-sitter's house. Dashed out a door late at night. I had a frantic trip home, including a four-hour flight where I was out of touch and desperately hoping he'd show up. There was another day of searching once I got home. Posting flyers. Calling dog shelters, police departments, veterinary offices. Thor finally showed up. He was hit by a car in the middle of a busy street. Nearly died. Had to have a hip rebuilt. (You wouldn't know it by looking at him now.)
I love both Loki and Thor equally, but I don't worry about Loki when I'm on vacation. She's Miss Confident. I WORRY about Thor.
So it was with a big smile and a sigh of relief that I walked in the door this afternoon, plopped down my suitcase and embraced my two crazy-to-see-us dogs.
I love my vacations, but I love coming home too.
To read more about the trip, see Dogs in New York, Visiting Ground Zero, Top of the Rock and Tea & Sympathy.