Adventure vs Vacation

It’s getting to be that time of year again — the dead of winter where temperatures are plummeting, snow is falling, followed by freezing rain and all we can do is bundle up and stay indoors.

It doesn’t matter who you are or how resilient you are, it gets to you.

I love playing hockey and last night I didn’t want to go — I’d been outside in -35C weather for the last two days and didn’t want to go out again — I was done with it, worn out, wanting to sit down and do nothing.

This past Monday they actually gave it a name — “Blue Monday” — which sounds pretty dumb, but I can see how it can bring the best of us down and reduce our moods to nothing short of grunts and snorts.

So to keep our moods up, here we are, planning for this summer, planning for the next two months when the weather will turn and we can feel the sun on our faces and the only question I have is —

“Are we going on an adventure or a vacation?”

There is a difference, a big difference.

Vacation is where you go and sit on a chair, read books, drink, eat and watch people do things.

An Adventure is where you go, throw the chair aside, drink when you can, eat whatever’s available and go do the things that people are watching you do.

Both are fine.

I enjoy doing both but the key to enjoying one or the other is knowing what you are signing up for in advance.

Coming back from a vacation thinking you were going on an adventure is a recipe for disappointment.

Coming back from an adventure when you really need a vacation to recharge your batteries is a recipe for exhaustion.

Too often, we go into it, either with families or friends, not wanting to communicate our preferences because we don’t want to step on anyone's toes or hurt anyone’s feelings by doing something different.

If you’re there, you’re part of the Adventure, part of the Vacation, part of the experience — so what you say matters, what you want to do matters and where you are going matters even more.

The best part, is when you know what you’re getting into, your attitude shifts considerably — there is none of the old — “ugh, just let me sleep before we go on that sweet catamaran ride, I’m tired of doing stuff” — your mindset will immediately shift to — “hell yeah, we’re getting up early to get on the water because I can rest when I get back home and talk about this awesome adventure then”.

It’s a mindset and like anything, the more prepared you are, the better prepared you are.