It’s good to be back on the grid and writing again! For those of you who don’t know, I had a skiing accident in March and had to get knee surgery this past week. I tore my ACL, which requires a long and intensive rehabilitation process. It’s been a big set-back and disappointment on many levels, but I suppose in the big picture worse things could happen – so I’m trying to make the most of it by thinking of all the things I’ll have more time to do now, such as writing, reading and travel research and planning. Travel planning can take up a lot of time, so I figured in the weeks after my surgery I’d finally nail down a trip we’ve been talking about booking this summer to Spain, specifically Barcelona and San Sebastian. Problem is, I can’t quite commit!
I know what you’re thinking: Isn’t it too late to book a trip to Europe? It might be. Plane ticket prices the week leading up to my surgery were not ideal, but they were doable, especially if we book our accommodations through Airbnb all the way through. Why so late in the game? My husband recently started a new job, and we had to wait and see how vacation time would work out. Yet the reality is we’ve known for at least a month now that we can plan a trip this summer. If we really wanted to make this trip to Spain happen before my surgery we could have. Or at least we could have partially nailed down some of the plans, like the plane tickets. If I’m going to be completely honest with myself, I think I’ve been using my accident as an excuse to procrastinate. Sure it’s delayed things, but I’ve come to realize that it’s not the only reason why we still have not booked this trip to Spain. The other reason is apprehension. In the wake of the Paris and Brussels attacks, I’m a little nervous. As a travel blogger I don’t like to admit this, but if I’m going to be honest, that’s how I feel.
The resounding mantra in the travel world is to keep on traveling. Don’t let the terrorists stop you from seeing and learning about this amazing planet, and besides, your chances of being in a terror attack are lower than being struck by lightning or getting into a car accident. We’ve all heard the statistics. And I understand all of it. But I have a family now, with two little girls to think of besides myself. It’s not like I’m backpacking in my 20’s or Honeymooning in my 30’s. The chances of anything happening are miniscule, but I guess my question is – is it worth it? Sure this is the world we live in now, and it’s important to educate our children by exposing them to new places and cultures – that’s why I’m a family travel blogger! – but it’s exactly because I’m a family travel blogger that’s made it hard to pull the plug. I have kids. I know my apprehension is going to upset a lot of travel writers out there, but like I keep saying, it’s how I feel. Or at least part of how I feel. The other part of me says just do it, anything could happen anywhere at anytime. We can’t live in fear. And, perhaps most importantly of all, we live right outside of New York! Are we not going to go into the city anymore? Of course not! So why would we not go to Europe?
The fact of the matter is I am torn. Part of me wants to go, and part of me thinks we should plan an old-fashioned American vacation. Something classic and beachy on the east coast, or something out west, maybe even a road trip along the California coast. I’ve been dying to show my girls Big Sur. The indecision is what has been really difficult, and I’m sure I speak for many parents out there – it’s not an easy decision to make. There’s a good chance we may still book the trip – my husband thinks we should do it – but whatever the case in the end, it’s been a struggle. I completely understand and respect both arguments, but I would be lying if I said terrorism didn’t affect the planning process. As a parent, how could it not?
I’d love to know what you think. Are the recent attacks affecting your travel plans or not?
(Note: the postcard above is from when I was in Barcelona 20 years ago…I can’t wait to take my girls there some day, whether it be this summer or some later point in time).