8 Things I Thought Would Never Happen on Vacation

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If you would have told me 5 years ago that my ideal vacation would involve driving 4,000 miles, hiking 60 miles and sleeping in a tent with my boyfriend, I would have questioned your sanity. In fact, I probably would have questioned MY sanity. But ladies and gentlemen, that’s exactly what I did last week and I came away from the trip with a greater appreciation of the outdoors. There is something to be said about hiking through wildflowers and over streams without a care in the world. It gives you time to reflect, to sort out any demons you may have and realize how much you appreciate those in your life.

his and her backpacks

Other things happen too. The things you think are deal-breakers become insignificant and the simplest things mean the most. And then, crazy stuff like this happens. Here are 8 things I thought would never happen on vacation.

A rest area impressed me.

Normally stopping at rest areas makes me cringe. Creepy people seem to be there and they aren’t the cleanest. I can’t remember what town it was but somewhere in Wyoming was the best rest area ever. There were individual bathrooms so you had all the privacy you needed and they were clean. I was so impressed I almost took a picture but that would be…awkward.

I wore a mosquito net.

I hate things on my head. HATE them. But, I have learned I hate mosquitos even more and when you’re under attack, a mosquito net looks pretty attractive. DEET can keep them from biting you but it sure can’t keep them from flying in your mouth. I’ll take the dorky mosquito net over that any day.

We were off the grid.

And no, we just didn’t turn off our cell phones. In Glacier National Park we were deep in the park, as in only a few miles from the Canadian border which meant no cell services whatsoever. In fact, the closet town to the trailhead ran on solar energy.

The dehydrated meals tasted good.

Maybe it was the fact I had been eating Probars and Cliffs bars for two days or maybe it was knowing that if a bear or mountain lion attacked me, it would be my last meal. Either way the dehydrated meals we took backcountry camping were pretty darn good. In fact, if I had one right now I’d boil some water and eat one.

A Super 8 Hotel vacancy made my day.

I won’t go into the details but let’s just say when you’re not feeling well, think you’re going to be sleeping in your car and then happen to get one of the last hotel rooms in Jackson Hole for under $300, you do a happy dance. I can’t say that I’ve stayed at a Super 8 before and doubt that I do so again but I really, really was happy to stay at this one.

There were leftover M&Ms.

Against Kurt’s wishes, I brought a brand-new bag of peanut butter M&Ms. One of his vices. Typically, this would be gone in a matter of days of somehow, we managed to ration those little bits of peanut buttery goodness. One bag lasted us 9 days and there are still some left!

We didn’t fight.

Seriously, we didn’t fight at all. Not even a little spat. We’re both pretty independent people and like our me time so for us to spend 24-7 together for over a week, that’s a change. We got along great. Not bad for two independent and stubborn people.

Subaru Outback has made the short list.

For years I made fun of my friend Mike’s Ruby Suby. The thing was rusted, didn’t have AC and was 10,000 years old. His wife and I even tried to sell it in a garage sale with no luck. Then, I started dating Kurt and in addition to a truck, he had a Subaru. I didn’t think much of his crossover wagon, until I had to drive it about 12 hours on our trip. Now I am actually considering purchasing the vehicle that I have invested so much time in making fun of and he’s grinning from ear-to-ear.

What things have surprised you while on vacation?

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About Sarah

Mom. Blogger. Runner. Hiker. Insomniac. Not necessarily in that order.

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