Taking Shape

We have a spreadsheet going. We’re spreadsheet kind of people. Not what you’d expect of a family planning to toss away all responsibility for a half year I know. But it’s helping our holiday take shape.

Pete has what he calls the “big rocks” to resolve in business before he sorts all the peripheral stuff. Our sabbatical is looking a bit like that too. We know we want to head to the UK during New Zealand’s July school holidays, stopping on route for the first time to catch some sun and perhaps some of the amazing zoos Singapore has on offer. We know we want to travel around Europe too – a month or more is certainly a “big rock”. Following the kiwi right-of-passage I’ve done a couple of whistle-stop tours through Europe. I certainly haven’t seen it all, but I feel like I’ve had a taste. Pete traveled to New Zealand 20 years ago, and apart from summer camping in the south of France, he hasn’t seen much of that big continent over the water. He’s never set foot on German soil and schoolboy German lessons have been truly wasted. Having loved Germany, Switzerland and Austria, I’d certainly like to see these on the list. Fortunately Pete’s in agreement.

We also know that we want to spend time in Cornwall, connecting to a place that remains in our hearts. Cornwall in the autumn could be cold and grey. But we could be surprised with days of sun streaming over the Mount and across the bay. What we do know is that our time there will be memorable.

The final big rocks are family. A week in Europe enjoying all-inclusive catering and children’s entertainment is on the cards, as is time with Pete’s family in his home village, and seeing the sights of London with my brother and his family too.

We’re enjoying the conversations at parties and barbeques where travel suggestions fly. Italy’s beautiful Lake Garda has come up a number of times and our friends in Sweden have some ideas for a winter wonderland trip. Books, maps and blogs are a great source for trip planning too. Pete’s found a wave sailing course on the west coast of Ireland. There’s no objection from me….give me a smiling Irishman with a tall tale or those green, green (rained soaked) valleys any day.

I’m waiting for the travel agent to return my call. I’m inquiring about tickets. It’s starting to get real.


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