Cliff is a home body, always has been. For at least twenty-five of the almost-forty years we've been married, I milked cows twice a day, so we had a reason (sometimes an excuse) to have to stay home.
Travel has often been cost-prohibitive around here anyway, with Cliff being the only one with a job for so much of our lives. Things worked out. We stayed home; it isn't a bad place to be.
In 1993, after some very hard-to-take job losses, Cliff got his present job and our finances started looking up a little with every raise he received. Somewhere around that time, I sold my last two milk cows, and we began planning for a real vacation.
We went to Colorado a couple of times, buying a popup tent camper somewhere along the line. We took a trip down through Kentucky and Tennessee. I enjoyed myself thoroughly; Cliff, not so much. I'm sure this is partly because I don't drive, so he's the one doing all the work.
But he's always thinking about what he'd be doing at home if he were here. And often, it is important things that need doing, like putting up hay. But the plain truth is, he'd just rather be home than anywhere.
Myself, I love to travel. Not just the arriving at my destination, but the whole jouney there. I enjoy looking out the window and watching the world go by, and seeing us inch across the map I keep on my lap as we follow the white line.
When I got a job over five years ago, I did some traveling on my own with my newfound funds. For the first time in my life, I flew on a commercial airplane... to a chat room get-together in Tennessee. I took a couple of trips on Greyhound busses, but my last jaunt (to Dallas) was pretty unpleasant, and I swore off busses entirely. The people-watching was great, but there's too much risk of missing a connection in some podunk town and getting stuck there for twenty-four hours until the next bus comes along; it almost happened to me.
I flew to Virginia and spent a few days with my friend Sue. I flew into Washington, DC, another time and spent a glorious week with another friend in Virginia, Joanna, and I got goosebumps when I saw my nation's capital for the first time. I bought airplane tickets for my daughter and myself, and we visited my sister at her winter home in Texas.
Then I quit my job, and the traveling ended. Cliff fixed my cabin-in-the-woods, so I could "camp out" on our property. To everything there is a season, and I'm willing to have a season of staying home for vacations, once again. I've even considered buying a milk cow and some chickens: after all, if I'm going to be home all the time...
And then, we bought this motorcycle. Cliff immediately started talking about getting a trailor to pull behind it, so we could take a tent along. Huh? A tent? He's also mentioned that they make little popup campers for motorcycles to pull.
::knocking on Cliff's helmet:: "Hello? Who are you, and what have you done with my husband?"
Yesterday he was reading a "Wing World" magazine (the Honda Gold Wing periodical), and looked up to tell me about some annual, national gathering of Honda riders called a "Wing Ding".
Next year it's in Nashville.
"We could do that," he said.
This could work out pretty well, actually. I have a good Internet friend in Nashville.
Hey Jen, are you going to be home around the 4th of July?