Sunday, June 19, 2011

Partial planning

Vacations involve a lot of stress. It's almost like you need a vacation to get over the stress of the vacation. I feel really, really awkward talking to Josh about things like trips in front of my sisters. They don't look up, but you can tell they stop watching tv or studying or whatever to listen. It makes me completely uncomfortable since it's already such a difficult topic.

Josh asked where I want to go. How do you answer that? Do you say like, somewhere really close by because you don't want to be rude, or do you go for broke and say "Four islands in Hawaii," because this might be your only chance? Josh told me to think about what I want to do on vacation, and then we can plan where to go based on where we can do those things.

All I want is a beach and ocean and no rushing anywhere and good food. Josh laughed and said we can get that pretty much anywhere. "We can go across the bridge, and go to the Jersey Shore."

He didn't mean that seriously. We're not going to Jersey. But I mean, it is really hard to spend someone else's money. My sisters watched without watching. Danielle slipped me a note. Ask for a vacation budget! "Why don't you give me a budget so I know what's reasonable?"

Josh didn't get it. I struggled. "Like, tell me how much you want to spend. Then I can plan based on how far that will go." Apparently there is no budget at all. You just spend however much you have to in order to have all the fun you want to have. If that means $2000 or $20,000, then that's what it costs. But I think a budget would be great, because I have no idea what's reasonable.

When my mom was alive we never went on vacations like Josh's family does. We went to Coney Island for the day, or to see an off-Broadway matinee. For the day. We always slept at home. She never really told me how much vacations cost that we couldn't afford them; they were just always for other people. Maybe I was too young to talk about money stuff then. My mom really only let me help with paying bills and balancing her checkbook.

It's probably wrong to not want to go on vacation because it's too stressful.


Anonymous said...

Sam, why don't you ask him to offer some suggestions for places with beaches and just choose one of them? The vacation is his gift so just let him worry about the cost. Now that you've commited to actually going, don't overthink it. Just try and enjoy it.

I've found that the more times I put myself into new and strange situations (like vacations are to you, or letting others do things for you), the easier it gets. That's not a bad thing.

Change is hard for many of us, but resisting it only makes it worse. I am way older than you are, but still stubbornly learning about embracing change. I cringe now when I think of the many opportunities I might have had in my life had I not been so resistent to changing the status quo.

Anonymous said...

Can you let Josh decide? Or is it that he wants you to decide? Maybe he wants to find out what you "really" want so he can give it to you. It was smart of you to say All I want is a beach and ocean and no rushing anywhere and good food. That worked in choosing a restaurant in Florida, your telling him some preferences to narrow it down and his choosing. Can you tell him your preferences again and remind him that you are giving him this time as a gift so he should choose where he wants to take you? If not, maybe explain to him that you are okay telling him your preferences but leaving the next step up to you is uncomfortable for you because of financial issues? And that really you have no specific place in mind? Unless that's not the case. If you have a specific place in mind then say so, but explain to him your fear of answering, that you don't want to be rude but don't want to miss your only chance, that you have no idea what's reasonable and that's why a budget would be great. Maybe since you said what you'd like to do he can come back with some options he'd like and you can say which options appeal to you most, like you did with the apartments? He did say for you to think about what you'd like to do and that then together you two could plan where to go based on that. As for actual suggestions, you obviously aren't going to go to Hawaii for a three-day weekend especially if you wouldn't be going to California. Boston and D.C. were both good suggestions for the Fourth of July, but since you want beach and ocean, how about Cape Cod? And it's totally okay to tell Josh you'd prefer discussing vacation plans when the two of you are alone, though it did sound like Danielle was helpful.

Elaine said...

Cape Cod or Maine, maybe?

Mizasiwa said...

i think this is one of those times that you and Josh need to talk, maybe say to him that you really want to have this vacation with him but that as he knows this will be your second vacation and you want to maximise your potential to enjoy it for more reasons that just having him around ;-) you would like a budget and maybe four suggestions of places to choice from. you shouldnt have to stress but its normal for you i think!

Anonymous said...

Cape Cod might be difficult without a car.

This is kind of funny but what about Bermuda? It's farther away and more luxurious than the Jersey shore but it's not as far away or as luxurious as Hawaii. It's close enough for a three-day weekend, and it is plain enough for you to just sit and relax but exotic enough that Josh will feel just sitting and relaxing there is fancy.

Anonymous said...

Instead of Cape Cod try Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard.

Abby said...

Israel! Come hang out with Alisha and me. :)

Anonymous said...

How about Turks and Caicos? It's in the Caribbean but only about a 3.5 hour flight from NYC. The beaches are supposed to be beautiful.

JJ said...

Quickie Caribbean, all-inclusive. Puerto Rico or US Virgin Islands if you don't have a passport, anywhere else if you do. Plenty of beaching, but you could also do something new like snorkeling or, IDK, jet-skiing?

Lisa said...

I find going on vacation stressful too. I enjoy it once I'm there, but I'm also really happy to get home. I always stress over how much it costs, even for "cheap" vacations. We go to Costa Rica alot, because my inlaws have a townhouse on the beach there, so it costs us just plane fare and a car rental, and a bit for food--but even so, taking five people (me, my husband and our three kids) to Costa Rica and feeding them spaghetti and tuna every night still costs us a few thousand. We visited my husband's 90 year old grandmother in Italy last year, and while it was one of the best vacations we've taken, I could have bought a Hyundai for how much it cost. (She's 90, we couldn't put it off much longer.)

One of my kids also has a peanut allergy, so I spend much of our vacation in foreign lands stressing about what my kid eats and if I'm going to have to navigate a foreign country health system. (We did on our last trip to Costa Rica. Not fun.)

You've given Josh your parameters, just let him pick the location. For a 3 day weekend it has to be someplace fairly close. Martha's Vinyard is a nice place, and there's a ferry that leaves from 35th st, so you don't have to drive in holiday traffic. (Its a five hour ride on the Atlantic Highlands ferry.)

Anonymous said...

I like the ferry from NYC to Martha's Vineyard idea. That way the vacation basically starts Friday afternoon out on the water in the ocean breeze. And on the way back Monday night you'd see all the fireworks.

Yankee, Transferred said...

I would ask Josh if he has any ideas, and ask him to help you pick. It will reduce stress, and you can get excited about the planning. Just a thought.