28 June 2014

Vacation from my vacation

How many times do you return from a vacation and say, “I need a vacation from my vacation?”  Well, if you were on the beach relaxing the whole time, you probably do not need one.  But when you are on an intense cultural trip to a place that you have not been before, it can be exhausting.  All travelers are different.  Some want to just sit by the pool and soak up the sun.  Others want to explore their destination and walk till they drop.  I like a combination of the two, but this last trip to Brazil for the World Cup was mostly exploration and cultural immersion.  It definitely felt like I needed a vacation from the vacation.

In 2007 I remember an exploration trip to China a year before the Olympics were being held there.  It was 17 days of trains, planes and automobiles.  And a lot of walking.  It was a great trip seeing China and many of its wonders, but I came home completely toast.  In fact, I even caught walking pneumonia and had to take antibiotics for a while and rest up.  I blame a lot of this on the pollution in many of the big cities that were visited, but I also blame myself for my constant need to be active on this trip and take in as much as possible.

Great Wall of China 1

Brazil was a different type of intensity.  It was the global excitement of a sporting event added to a beautiful destination.  There was a lot of walking and there was a lot of cheering.  It has only been a little over a week since I have returned but it is all so fresh in my mind.  It sure has helped that futebol is still be played and I see images of Rio de Janeiro and Belo Horizonte on the television every day.  Even though today was a “rest” day for the World Cup before the great matches of Brazil against Chile and Colombia against Uruguay tomorrow, I am still searching for games and news.  And there is plenty of it.  I am grateful for this.  In a way, the intensity is still there.

After this trip, however, there will be a true “vacation from my vacation” as I head to Cape Cod tomorrow with my family to get some beach time, some kid time and some seafood.  All of that with the inclusion of some great soccer will make this a unique experience, one that is the perfect recipe for my return from Brazil.