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PT & vacations-- not a priority.
Old 04-06-2005, 06:55 AM   #1
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PT & vacations-- not a priority.

Occasionally posters ask about ER surprises, so here's one from us.

For about two decades, spouse and I were paid by the U.S. Navy to live the world-wide PT lifestyle. The only catch was that we weren't in charge of the destination decisions. But no matter how strange the results, we thoroughly enjoyed every location and we never lived in base housing or the "American ghetto".

So we really looked forward to ER in a mobile society where you can say "Maui for dinner tonight?" or "How 'bout diving Chuuk next week?" This is even easier when you can go to the nearest military airfield and hop out in a day or two. (Although you often surrender control of the destination again.)

But we haven't made it happen. In three ER years the vast majority of our travel decisions have been deaths, family vacations (like DisneyWorld), or spouse's business. Considering my kid's two Mainland school field trips, with Japan on the high-school radar, in my ER she's more widely traveled than I am.

Some of it is still parenting or spouse's work obligations, but those excuses can't cover an entire year. And I'm realizing that PBS is part of the issue. Just about every "Nature" or "National Geographic" travelogue gives us a feeling of "OK, we get it" instead of "Honey, let's check the flight schedules!" And although I am an introvert with a strong dislike for traveling in small sardine cans (airplanes, not submarines), I'm also much more interested in home improvement & local surfing. While I've had wanderlust before, today I just don't feel that I've exhausted all the local opportunities for enrichment & entertainment.

Of course parenthood adversely impacts the PT lifestyle no matter what the school or its schedule. Maybe things will change when we become permanent empty-nesters (we've enjoyed every one of our kid's field trips at least as much as she has). But there's certainly nothing wrong with trips that don't go farther than the back yard.

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