When North Carolina State basketball coach Jim Valvano gathered his basketball team together for the first time prior to the 1983 season, he set up a ladder and had the team practice cutting down the net as if they had just won the NCAA Championship.
He viewed it as good practice for the real thing. Imagine his surprise later that year, when his Cinderella team miraculously turned their ambitious dream into a reality, beating the much hyped University of Houston 54-52 for the 1983 National Championship.
I haven’t cut down any nets in mock celebration, but I’m considering taking my own pre-celebration practice steps. Instead of cutting down a net, I’m going to practice packing my vacation suitcase.
You see I need to take a few drastic steps. My wife and I have been talking about possible family vacation spots, but we’ve had trouble coming to an agreement. It’s an easy enough decision. In fact, it’s fun to dream about, but the D-Day planners took less time in planning the Normandy invasion.
My wife and I can’t decide on the weeks we want to take off. Since she’s a teacher we’re trying to coordinate with her school schedule and then throw in my work and project schedule. On top of that, we’re also trying to plan around our kids many summer adventures.
To make matter worse, we can’t agree on the most important issue, where to go. We go back and forth on the type of vacation we want to spend. We keep falling into four vacations types:
—Sun, surf and Calypso. The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism has a slogan It’s better in the Bahamas. White sand beaches, paddle-boarding, parasailing, romantic get-aways, the Caribbean has a bit of everything. It doesn’t have to be the Bahamas, but it definitely has be warm.
—Sun, sand, surf, and family. We usually spend some part of the summer at the Jersey Shore. We know it like the back of our hands. We’ll start our day with a stack of pancakes at Dock Mike’s Pancake House and then lounge on the beach. If we’re real adventurous, we’ll spend the day at Cape May County Zoo, gorge on fresh seafood and finish out the day with ice cream at Yum Yums Ice Cream shop in Sea Isle. What’s not to like?
–The tried-and-true. Millions of people travel each year to Walt Disney World or Universal Studios in Orlando; the National Mall and the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C., or even New York City or a million other hot touristy spots.
–Panoramic trips. Every year we say that we should travel to the Grand Canyon in Arizona or Glacier National Park in Montana or Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. Or on a more international scale, I keep proposing that we should travel to see the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France; The Giants Causeway or the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland; Ayers Rock or the Great Barrier Reef in Australia; Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe; or even Machu Picchu in the Andes Mountains in Peru.
We can’t seem to agree on any one spot and many of the places we want to go, we need more time planning, meaning they’re not places you want to go in the middle of the Summer or Fall when hordes of other people are doing the same thing.
However, if we don’t pick a spot soon we’re going to choosing to go on solo trips or worse yet, we’ll be stuck at home on a staycation. I love my wife, but I know what a staycation will mean: a chance for us to catch up on all the household projects that need completed, working in the yard, painting and putting down new carpet, cleaning the basement and garage, etc., etc., etc.
So, I’m begging all my readers and blogger friends: I need some vacation suggestions and I need them fast. Send any and all ideas my way. God knows, I don’t want to be stuck at home this summer.
Consider this an S.O.S.! Help!