Brandon is graduating in April (hooray!), and since I am adamant (bordering on neurotic) about keeping a travel fund, a couple of months ago I asked him where he would like to go as a graduation celebration. He wanted to go on a cruise. Now, I love a cruise as much as the next person. Unlimited food all day. Sea breeze. Unlimited food all day. And unlimited food all day.
Who wouldn't love that?
But I admit I was slightly disappointed by his choice. I loved our honeymoon cruise. But my desire to repeat a cruise was minimal since cruises violate a couple of my key travel philosophies:
1. Take advantage of free/cheap activities
2. Explore as much and as long as I want
Time at your destinations is very limited on a cruise, and, even though we stopped at Belize, Mexico, and Honduras on ours, I don't feel like I've really been to those countries. We didn't really see three Central American countries--a lot of the time, it felt more like a pit stop at three mega tourist traps with beautiful water and expensive activities. Don't get me wrong--I loved it. I loved seeing beautiful new places with my new husband.
But I knew it didn't take a cruise to get us to beautiful places. I did a lot of investigating, and I found inexpensive airfare to a destination I thought could be really great, though perhaps not typical. The more I looked into it, the more I thought it would fulfill both of our wishes. I casually mentioned the airfare deal I had found to Brandon and then showed him what the beaches looked like there.
It worked. He wanted to go.
Before buying the tickets, though, I couldn't help but think how close we would be to my parents and how much I've wanted to get over to visit them. I miss my mom and dad something fierce, and they're only halfway done with their mission. Out of curiosity, I looked into how much it would cost to fly over to see them while we were on our trip. In a lovely stroke of good fortune, the combined airfare to visit both our original destination AND my parents was a couple hundred dollars less per ticket than it would have been for us to just buy tickets to see my parents.
We're headed to the Philippines and Australia in two months!
We're both really looking forward to adventure, relaxation, beautiful places, and to seeing my parents(!)! I can barely stand it. I'm already sad to leave the places we'll be going, but I'm so grateful we're able to do this together!
We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. T.S. Eliot