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Tuesday, June 17, 2008
It's summer, which means travel time
This is going to be a cross-country sort of summer. First I'll have to pick up my kids from Cashiers, North Carolina, where they'll be visiting with their grandparents. Then it's down to Miami, so my son can go to his favorite day camp down there and from there, I'll fly with my daughter to New York where she'll be attending Camp Broadway. It's really not as pretentious as it sounds. It's just something fun for her Diva-self to do. Then, after catching my breath for a couple of weeks, it's off to San Francisco and the Romance Writers of America National Conference. This is my event-- something I look forward to every year, the opportunity to network and see friends I haven't seen for the past year, and get dressed up in something other than sweats and t-shirts. It's one of the most energizing events, from a professional/creative standpoint and the fact that this year it's in San Francisco, one of my absolute favorite cities on the planet, just adds to the anticipation.
(I also get to present at the RITA awards, so I'm very excited about that as well.)
On the downside, however, I'm fully expecting all of this travel to be exhausting and I know that I'm going to be more than ready to come home and retreat into my cave. The upside of National being held during the summer is that most of us have greater freedom to travel. The downside is that by the time you come home, the last thing you want to do is travel again. Which is quite the bummer sometimes, because I do have some dream trips I'd love to take and most of them involve a powerful car and the open road. I absolutely love driving and traveling by car. From a writing standpoint, it's actually my favorite plotting time—I've always made up stories while driving. And from a creative standpoint, I get so much out of seeing places up close and personal—it never ceases to amaze me how varied and amazing the United States is from state to state and even from town to town.
You know, I even still have the old AAA atlas that's all marked up in colored pencil with the routes I was going to take:
U.S. 1 from Key West all the way to Maine.
The Pacific Coast Highway.
And my most desired road trip? The Mother Road, Route 66, all the way from Chicago to Los Angeles, preferably with stops along the way at every kitschy roadside attraction.
Mind you, I have regular, run-of-the-mill vacations I'd love to take. I mean, I certainly wouldn't turn my nose up at a week at a secluded beach house in Hawaii. But give me a full tank of gas and a road? It would have to be a pretty amazing beach house to make me give that up.
So, what are some of your dream vacations?