When it comes to short-term travel, different people adopt different approaches when planning trips.
For some (like my friend mentioned here), it’s an easygoing, whatever-will-be-will-be frame of mind.
Flights are booked almost last minute, as is accommodation (which always seems to work out). Even if they don’t necessarily know how they’re getting from one destination to the next, they calmly figure it out in the end. And if they’re in a place they like and they want to stay an extra day or a week? No problem.
For others, trip-planning requires a higher, more precise degree of organization.
Tickets are booked, accommodations arranged, and itineraries are drafted. This traveller knows where they’re going, when they’re going to be there, what they’re going to see (and what day), and when they’re leaving. Deviation from the plan could elicit discomfort, but that’s all dependent on the person.
And then there’s me (and people like me, to varying degrees). I consider myself a hybrid of sorts.
I do like to arrange things like transportation and accommodation, well in advance – I just want one less thing to worry about while on the go.
As for what I do when I get there, I have a list in my head of places I aim to see, but not a detailed-to-the-minute itinerary. And if I don’t make it (which is very likely, because I’m not an early-morning person, and I REALLY enjoy my sleep), it’s not the end of the world. I just go down the list and decide I want to do next.
Of course, my normal travelling “demeanour” is currently being tested.
A friend and fellow traveller, who lives in Ottawa, asked me several weeks back if I’d interested in going state-side for a trip during the August long weekend.
Like I WASN’T going to say yes.
Of course, in making plans and gleefully daydreaming about our upcoming getaway, I haven’t quite completed booking all the particulars for my upcoming trip in September. So now I’m trying to juggle planning for both and wondering if I’ve bitten off a bit more than I can chew.
I like to book the accommodations, and have a bit of time left over to read up on sights I might want to see. And if I’m travelling with someone, I’d like to have read up a bit before offering input on what I’d like to see. If I don’t, not only do I feel behind the ball, but then I feel I’m simply agreeing with my travelling companion, since they’ve already done quite a bit of reading, and they feel they’ve got a general idea of what they’d like to see. I don’t like to be a tag-along traveller.
But I suppose I only have myself to blame for that. Travel is, after all, what you make it. It’s the difference between a bunch of pictures you post on Facebook to prove that you were there, and the memories you make, and the emotions evoked when you experience a new place or culture.
Perhaps this is where I should take my friend Jen’s philosophy and just go with the flow.