by Jamie Brazil
January 25, 2022
“Sometimes the road of life takes some unexpected turns, but in the end, life is no accident.”
We’re hitting the road this year. Me. You. Everybody. Airlines, cruise ships, and oil companies are all predicting 2022 will be a banner year for Americans to pack their suitcases and catch up on downtime. So what am I looking forward to the most in 2022? Travel!
Yet as I write this post snowflakes are fluttering past my window, it’s 26 degrees outside, and there’s zero chance I’m venturing anywhere beyond the end of the sidewalk — today, tomorrow, maybe even all week. Beyond taking the dog out to do her business, I’m not going anywhere soon, not even to my dental cleaning scheduled eight weeks ago.
Yet the text messages are piling up faster than snow drifts.
“I’m renewing my passport,” says one friend.
“We’ll be in India,” announces another.
A neighbor piques my interest with: “You’ll never guess who has a house in Greece!”
I long to crack open my calendar, flip through the months, and plan for future getaways. Instead, I look out the window. SNOW. And I remind myself that I will travel again, but for now my exotic locales, white-sand beaches and ancient temples will remain between the pages.
Currently, my armchair travels are via Ruth Reiner’s Japan in The Singing Widow of the Buddhist Priest. Before that, Katherine Faulkner’s Greenwich Park set in London, to a micro-dosing health and wellness retreat in the Australian Outback in Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty. My appetite for travel has never been stronger.
But my trepidation is stronger.
There are still global uncertainties and air scares. Some countries aren’t so stable. Flight cancellations. And what would I do if the passenger next to me refused to wear a mask?
Then there’s honoring word count goals. This I can solve! Writing retreat. But where? And how will I get there? How much will it cost?
On that note, financial resolutions: since when does dog boarding cost more than a trip to Vegas? If I can even land a reservation — for her, not me.
And finally… I don’t know where my “good suitcase” landed.
Yeah, there’s that. I’ve lost my favorite set of multi-directional spinner wheels with a telescoping handle.
Since moving, and stashing lesser-used items in relatives’ basements and attics, I’m not as organized as you might expect. Though I can tell you exactly where all my favorite books are — and you wouldn’t need GPS to locate my towering TBR pile. Just don’t ask me where my suitcase ended up.
A mystery to be solved when the temperatures rise? Let’s hope so. My neighbor who spilled the secret-house-in-Greece news also told me about the HOA planning a garage sale in the summer. Now that’s inspiration. Cleaning out and consolidating stuff, reuniting with my suitcase, and maybe even raking in enough cash for a guilt-free writing retreat.
Stay tune for details on this epic neighborhood-wide sale. Who knows, if times and places work out, have I got a deal on travel novels for you: FREE. Because sharing my love of reading with other armchair travelers is a joy.
In the meantime, I’m playing phone tag with my dental office hoping I won’t wait another eight weeks to reschedule a brighter smile — as white as the falling snow? (Ummm, no. I drink far too much Columbian coffee!)
Though perhaps as aspirations go in 2022, my road of life will take some unexpected travel turns, and I’ll reread The Accidental Tourist on my way.
Jamie Brazil is a lifelong morning person, happiest when the sun is rising. She writes novels and screenplays with her husband, and had a hand in a certain book of wisdom authored by her beloved Bloodhound. Writing life aside, Jamie has worked as a unit production manager for multiple television documentaries aired on NHK, BBC, and throughout Asia. Learn more about Jamie at her website.