When I first started thinking about backpacking Europe for an extended period of time, an important question came to my mind – Would I actually like being by myself for very long? My hypothesis was yes – I had always enjoyed being alone with my thoughts, I’m sure that wouldn’t be different while I was traveling. But could I manage it for 2 straight months?
Like a good scientist, I decided to to test my hypothesis by going on vacation, alone, to an all-inclusive resort in Mexico for a week in June. (Plus, resort in Mexico, on the beach, with all-you-can-drink tequila for a week. Who wouldn’t want to do that?)
I was super excited about this trip. I had found a great deal so I was only spending around $1300CAD for flights, hotel, food, drinks, everything (plus my hotel room was on the beach front), and I had always wanted to go to Mexico. My parents, on the other hand, were much less excited.
On the phone with them:
Dad: “So you are going to have your cellphone with you the whole time?”
Lena: “Do you have any idea how much that would cost? God no.”
Dad: “No. You will have your phone with you.” He then proceeded to extend the coverage on my American cell phone to include Mexico. Which I thought would be enough. Until:
Dad: “Okay, what exact time every day are you texting us?”
Lena: “What the hell, Dad. No. I’ll be on the beach the whole time, I won’t have my phone with me. I’ll text you when I get the chance.”
Dad and Mom: “No. You are texting us every day at a specific time.”
Lena: After arguing until I realized resistance was futile: “Fine, I’ll probably be in my room every day after dinner, so around 7pm. I’ll text you then.”
Dad: “Okay, great. Now what are you going to text us?”
Lena: “Really?? You’ve already made me get a cellphone plan when I wanted to be off the grid, and I’ve already agreed to text you every night when I dont want to keep my phone with me anyway. I’m not making a secret code too.”
Mom and Dad: (cue insane rants about how I’ll get kidnapped and the kidnappers will send them messages to pretend its me, blah blah blah. Basically all the crazy stuff parents say after watching Taken – which, by the way, my idiot father did the week before I went to Greece and Italy with my high school. It did not help his paranoia.)
Lena: “….. You are crazy.”
Mom and Dad: “OKay, but you are texting us ‘K’ every day at 7pm or we will think you have been kidnapped and will call the US Embassy.”
Lena: “…… Fine.”
Mom: “Oh and dont go off the resort either.” I agreed. But went off the resort anyway. And just didn’t tell her. Sometimes lies are best for parent’s sanity (and children’s, because only a fool argues with fools.)
Funny story right? But why post it now? Why is it still relevant? Because Dad did the exact same thing for Europe.
Skyping with Dad: (with a very serious face) “So are we skyping every day, every other day…?”
Lena: “….. No. You can read my blog. I will update my blog every day. But that is all I give you.”
Dad: (Arguing and grumbling about how we should stay in touch)
Lena: “Nope. Blog. Bye now.” (Hang up)
So if anyone is wondering why I will be updating my blog every day during my travels – its so my dad doesnt call the US Embassy thinking I’ve been kidnapped.