Family Vacations and the Incredible Unfairness of the Personality Switcheroo
August 5, 2010 § 1 Comment
Our family is long overdue for a vacation. In fact, our first family vacation since the arrival of Kid is still waiting in the wings. Possibly due in part to the fact that the term “vacation” has two very different meanings to the two people planning it.
Nothing illustrates my inability to sit still more than my attitude towards going to the movies. I really, really, really do not enjoy it. The last movie I saw in the theatre was Toy Story 3 and my main motivation in agreeing to go was that I thought Kid would really get a kick out of it. As it turned out, his interest in the movie definitely ebbed and flowed. I, on the other hand, thought it was the cutest thing ever, and upon returning home promptly placed a lifetime order of protection on all of Kid’s toys. Still wasn’t enough to turn me into a movie person though.
I will make exceptions to my rule of avoiding movie theatres. For example, Husband and I did have a date night to check out The Hangover (hilarious) and I really do want to see Inception. But a movie person, I will never be. And I believe I could have done just fine for myself in a movie-less life except for one little thing: I married a movie guy. Husband does not share my inability to sit still and thus enjoys movies IMMENSELY. He also is quite happy to sit at home watching TV or to just putter around the house on his days off. I have to say that he really is an excellent sport because he’s a champ at agreeing to go on daytrips and hikes when I know he’d be just as happy (happier?) catching up on reruns of The Simpsons.
Now, you may think that herein would lie the problem of planning a family vacation. I’d want to fill up all our days with activities while he would want to lay by the pool. But as things would turn out, I love doing very little on “Vacation-vacation.” For the record, Vacation-vacation is very different from Travelling-vacation. If I am going travelling, my style is much more blitzkrieg. I launch an assault on all fronts and take it very seriously. But proper straight up Vacation-vacation? Give me a lounger in the sun, slather me with SPF 100 (oh how I do burn) and leave me alone. For some reason, I need to go somewhere in order to be satisfied with doing nothing. This should be a good thing, right? Husband and I should finally be on the same page leisure-activity-wise, correct? Alas, this is where I learned of the phenomenon of what I call the Vacation Personality Switcheroo.
va•ca•tion per•son•al•i•ty switch•er•oo [vey-key-shuhn pur-suh-nal-i-tee swich-uh-roo] – noun, plural -oos. An unexpected or sudden change or reversal in personality brought on by the freedom of vacation. This may also account for episodes of acting like an ass in places like Vegas.
Transplant me into another city and I am a sloth. Transplant Husband and he is an activity-driven dynamo. This has made planning our inaugural family vacation near impossible Or at least until Ask.com can find a good answer for my recent query: “What is a cheap vacation destination with stuff to keep my husband/child busy so I can lie on the beach and do nothing except swim to the pool bar?”
I’m still waiting.