As a result of starting this blog and reading other travel blogs, I have a burning desire within me to travel the world. I’ve been dreaming about traveling the world a lot recently, but I have always felt like it is just that — dreaming.
Recently, we had the pleasure of eating dinner at my parents’ house when gap years became the topic of conversation. It’s really not something I ever considered prior to becoming engaged in the travel blogoshere. In the past few months, I’ve entertained the idea, but I never gave it serious thought since I figured my friends and family would tell me it’s impossible or that it’s a silly idea. To my surprise, my father actually brought up the idea and before I knew it both of my parents were telling us that we should really consider taking a gap year sometime in the middle of our careers. That conversation made me realize that a gap year doesn’t have to be a dream — it can become a reality. I’m not going to take any actions right now, but I’m sure in the not too distant future I’ll begin saving for my gap year.
As I was dreaming of the future, my mind quickly wandered to the travel memories of my past. Before long, I was laying in bed thinking about all the amazing places my parents took me as a young child. No, they didn’t take me around the world, but they did take me all over the United States which, in my childhood, felt like the world. Every trip we took was an amazing experience and, quite frankly, I didn’t care about the rest of the world. Funny how things change.
I will cherish these 12 trips for the rest of my life, not to mention the dozens of other trips I’m not writing about.
- Visiting Disneyland, even though I only remember two rides: It’s a Small World and Splash Mountain. Oh yeah, I also remember watching my sister go up to Stephanie Tanner (Jodie Sweetin) from “Full House” to ask for an autograph. All I know is that her famous phrase on “Full House” was “How rude!” and in real life, she was quite the snob. How rude!
- Coooling off at Sliding Rock Park in Sedona, AZ on a road trip from California to Texas.
- Taking in the dramatic scenery at Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
- Riding a ferry out to Alcatraz Island in San Francisco, California.
- Enjoying the breathtaking beauty of the Grand Canyon in Arizona.
- Enjoying the scenic 17-mile drive in Monterey, California.
- Snowboarding and staying in a cozy cabin in Lake Tahoe, California.
- Riding the High Roller and Big Shot on the Stratosphere in Las Vegas, Nevada (I’m a thrill-seeker, but those rides were a little too scary for me).
- Camping in Yosemite: Unlimited hiking, mountain biking, and bear sighting (no joke; a hungry bear broke into our van once).
- Driving a dune buggy for the first (and last time) at age 12 on the sand dunes in Oregon. Memory maker: crashing into a stop sign before I left the parking lot.
- Horseback riding in Mammoth, California.
- Fishing in Colorado (minus the whole jumping into the freezing cold lake in order to fetch the fishing pole I sent flying into the water — not the brightest idea).
I can only hope one day I am able to spoil my children with memorable trips/vacations.
P.S. Sorry about the poor quality of the photos. They are scanned images!