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What You Carry With You

Scattered around this vacation house (which we will soon be leaving, sadly) are things about being inspired. It’s part of the name of the company we booked through, you see, so it’s everywhere (even in the WiFi password). But it’s made me think about how vacations can be inspiring. I always find I write more around vacation time. My drafts folder is filled with stuff from around BiSC and traveling. Something about getting away from my usual life seems to inspire me a bit, in more than a few ways.

And I think that’s good. Obviously. But I think you can pull different things from different places. This place has instilled in me a few things that I hope I can carry with me. It would be all too easy to just go back and slip into the usual routines. There’s a reason for that. Ruts are well-defined and comfortable. And I don’t have any dramatic changes in mind, to be clear. My New Year’s Resolutions are really more goals, and most of them aren’t SMART, in that they’re not whatever the fuck that acronym stands for (I know the M is measurable, the A is achievable, the T is time-sensitive, but I can’t remember the rest. Bad HR guy. Bad!). But I don’t think they always need to be. One of them, for example, was to be a better husband. I don’t think I’m a bad one now (nor would my wife call me one) but I will always, always strive to be better, because she deserves nothing less than every measure of my striving.

But I started writing this, sitting here on the porch, when it’s probably a little too cold to do so (but I’m doing it anyway cause it’s DEFINITELY too cold to do so at home now) because I wanted to think about what I wanted to carry with me from this place.

Activity. The notion that one should go out and do things. I’m not saying there won’t be WoW-filled weekends with the TV in the background and the cats cuddling up with us. But I’d like to find ways to get some more activity into my life. I do really want to find time to get better at golf come the warmer weather. There’s such a fun culture around it. Reading about golf reminds me of how I felt when I first started getting in to WoW, that I was on the cusp of this huge subculture of people who shared this hobby, that there was just so much to explore. Golf can take you to beautiful places, give you chances to bond with friends and family, and get you out and being more active. I’m not saying I’m going back to Boot Camp (that was fun, but not sustainable, I don’t think, for me) but I’m saying I’d like to go back to the gym and spend some time on the treadmill. I’d like to try and take the dog for longer walks on the weekends. I’d like to get back to yoga. I think trying to commit to any one activity hasn’t worked for me, but maybe I can look at doing something on a regular basis. That’s what I’ve seen here, people going and running around and doing things. And as much as it may go against my urge when resting (which is to just sleep and rest the day away), I think it would be good for me.

Kindness. It’s a cliche that the South is polite, and I’m sure part of what we’ve seen here has been simple resort politeness, but everyone here has been so incredibly nice. People say hello as you walk by and wish you Happy Holidays and whatnot. People are warm, and happy, and I’d like to try and carry some of that into my daily life. It’s too easy to just slide into grumpiness in my day to day life. I know there are times where I’m short with people because I didn’t sleep well, or I’m stressed about something, or something. I’m not saying I’m going to be perfect. But I’d like to try and carry some of that Southern hospitality into my life. 

Achievement. I’m not totally sure how to put this into words, as it’s a kind of nebulous notion I get from folks here, but it’s the idea of striving for better. Of working hard and playing hard. Of not being afraid to take a work call while on vacation, because it’s important and because one or two won’t break everything. It’s the idea of working a bit over vacation, because you take pride in your work and your work is important, regardless if you’re the President or a salesman. I think it’s also about taking pride in yourself, about dressing up nicely, about taking pride and care in your appearance, because you deserve that. Not because you should, not because you must, but because you choose to. I’m not saying be a workaholic wearing a suit all the time, but there’s a care you can take that won’t destroy your personal life and won’t break your bank.

So that’s what I’m carrying with me as I leave Georgia. Now, I must go get ready to leave, sadly. I will absolutely miss it. I’m not sure I’ll ever be back here, but damn am I glad I got the chance to come here.

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