In September I found myself in the United Kingdom for roughly two weeks. More accurately, the finding was done for 15 months prior to my arrival. Fifteen months to plan two weeks. Easy.
But when one has that long to plan and an active Pinterest account, one keeps finding more and more and more places and events and excursions to add into the trip itinerary. Not to mention that one has been desperate to return to London for a half dozen or so years. (Reference my previous commentary in the September 2012 issue of Storyboard about the British Library; it was time to get back.)
My college friend and I made a wish list of “if we could do everything, this is what we’d do” for about 14 of those 15 planning months. Granted, we made big decisions about which cities to stay in overnight rather early on, but we had 24 hours each day we could fill to our hearts’ content.
The planner in me was under the mentality of fitting in everything we possibly could. Then the wanderer in me realized that we might be able to squeeze in another site, but we would be sacrificing truly appreciating the other sites of the day. This is a delicate balance, and time is a delicate thing. During the last few weeks before our adventure, we pared down the wish list to the feasible list to the perfect list. The end result was a brilliant trip. It allowed us to live in the moment and fully experience everything we did without feeling rushed. Not once did I feel like I missed out.
This has been a realization for me in more than just travel. It’s important to make decisions based on how I can make the most of my time: not to fill it just to fill it, not to rush through, but to appreciate the blessing that is every moment.
And so, reader, I encourage you, too, to “stop the glorification of busy” and instead take the time to absorb, enjoy, and flourish.
– Kristin Matzke is the former Client Services Coordinator at Lime Valley Advertising, Inc. (and an aspiring world traveler).