Travel is a doorway in Yelapa. What do I mean by that exactly? Well, travel itself is a doorway to another world, another culture, a geography, a lifestyle. It is bright. It is full of potential. It is a bit surprising. It can be confining, liberating, original, scary or safe. Like a doorway in Yelapa.
Travel is my favourite pastime out of all the possible diversions in life. Travel plus writing, well it doesn’t get better than that. I am a strong believer in family travel and my kids travel with me as often as we are able. We are a team. They are great little travellers and of course they enjoy all the benefits of that. Meeting new friends, learning new things and conversing with people who speak different languages.
As a child I didn’t travel much because we didn’t have the income to be able to see the world. We took regular yearly vacations to a cottage. That was a three hour drive away. I loved the beach and I still do. Sometimes, a simple road trip can be enough of a vacation to rejuvenate the spirit and the body. I anticipate this summer visiting a cottage again. Even the sound of a cottage screen door can evoke a certain atmosphere and the feeling of home away from home.
Before we had kids we travelled a bit. Mostly to warm climates and fun leisurely spots. After we had kids we went into a period of shock where we were both incredibly happy to be a family but also unable to afford to travel with a baby. As both kids transitioned to school full time my ability to generate income grew and so we considered family travel. Could we do it? Would it be worth it? Could we afford it? Would the kids remember any of it?
We also have a special needs child to consider so none of our decisions are taken lightly. In fact they are often weighed and measured endlessly before we leap. We started our daughter with very small road trips to see how she could handle the changes. We upped that incrementally over the years, so we have been able to see Mexico, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Disney Florida, and many other areas of Florida, Ontario, and Quebec. This, happily has proven to be an extremely positive experience. Our kids both travel well and they enjoy family travel with us. I intend to keep that love alive as long as I can. I hope to one day be that Grandma travelling with her grandchildren and children on a cruise ship where intergenerational travel is so common.
This year we took our first ever cruise. In my head I am planning another cruise to follow up on that great experience. This past year I have visited several countries, and I have been really blessed to be able to travel as I have. Colombia was a doorway to so many things. It was a doorway to remembering what really matters in life and a reminder to always give as much as you can to people, especially children who need help. Puerto Vallarta was a beautiful diversion and some sweet time spent with only my older daughter right before she turned 13. The cruise was a time to explore many new places and try some awesome things such as snorkelling with stingrays and nurse sharks. My kids have also zip lined and parasailed and ridden donkeys down a mountain with us. Recently they travelled with us to Mont Tremblant where we learned how to ski. Skiing itself is a doorway to the outdoors and better health, fitness and happiness.
There are many moments as a parent when you take pride in something your kids do. Sometimes they happen almost daily and sometimes you need to look a bit harder for them. I find these moments often when travelling with the kids. Maybe because I slow down long enough to see them for what they are. Is there anything better than listening to your child speak French confidently with someone she just met in Quebec? Or hearing the kid’s club coordinator tell you that your eight-year-old daughter was teaching all the kids and adults how to speak French? Or hearing a child holler on a beach in Cancun: “Man, that little girl can hit!” as you spy your six year old drive a baseball down the beach.
Travel is a doorway to so many things. Just like this doorway in Yelapa. You never know what exists beyond that doorway until you take it. It’s a surprise, a picture, a photograph, a memory. It is a privilege in a world where many don’t have a proper door, or access to a home, or ability to travel. Travel is a doorway in Yelapa.
Every Tuesday I host a perpetual travel linkup here: Leave your favourite travel posts here for others to read and I will also leave you a comment.