Living life out of a suitcase for seven weeks is an interesting experiment. (OK, four large suitcases and four backpacks, total, for our family of four. Not counting the furnishings of our rented apartment, which are more than adequate.)
Once in a while I recall that there is a houseful of stuff in another state, waiting for our return. Do I miss any of it? What part of it is really necessary?
It would be nice to sleep in my lovely firm king-size bed. Or to do laundry without having to scrounge for quarters.
Sometimes I wish for shoes. Right now I have a pair of sneakers, a pair of flat sandals, and sandals with heels. I’m not wearing the latter much, and sometimes I wish I had another pair with me, just for variety.
But these are passing thoughts, not important.
I think back to our stay on Kawai last month. We were at breakfast one morning at a lavish buffet set on a beautifully landscaped patio, next to a waterfall and a koi pond, with white swans gliding by. One of my sons asked: If you could live here for free, would you do it? I said that although the resort left little to be desired, it would be too far away from our friends and family, all the people we love.
Turns out that’s the only thing I really miss. Sure, e-mails and blogs keep us in touch, convey the facts, even some of the emotions. But when a friend called the other day, it was such an unexpected joy to hear her voice, to share a joke in real time and hear the laughter. And even a cell phone only goes so far.
It’s these connections that reel us back in from our travels, not the house or the car, or the shoes.