So I’d arrived in Tuscany, to take an actual real live holiday. In this final post of the series, I reveal whether I go on to manage a full week unplugged.
Let me start by saying I make a distinction between travel and holiday. Travel time is not holiday time. Yes, over the course of the previous six days, I’d immersed myself in Malaysia and had a day off (ish) in Italy.
Yes, when you’re on the road, you take days off and time out, just as you would at home. You exercise. You do your washing. You eat. And yes, if you’re living a life like this, you work.
Travel is still actual life
Holiday on the other hand is meant to be fully restful. I remember when we used to take trips to the Med and all we’d do was get up, swim, eat, chill, eat, siesta, eat, party, sleep. What happened to holidays like that? I have no idea. Maybe workaholism really kicked in.
How hard is it to do nothing, though?
Let’s find out.
Sunday, 2 June 2013
- Spoke too soon on the jetlag. Wake at 8am and fine nobody else is around for about 3 hours.
- Breakfast then swim.
- Read by the pool.
- Hmm, what to do now?
- Realise I’m running out of clothes and need to organise my outfit for the wedding later in the week.
- Put some washing on.
- Lunch then swim.
- Read by the pool and hang out with friends.
- Plug phone in to charge. Walk awaaaay from the phone, Kris.
- Out for dinner with the bride and groom’s families.
Monday, 3 June 2013
- Breakfast then swim.
- Write a blog post waiting for people to get up. Why am I the only one awake? It’s 9am!
- More wedding party people arriving to the villa today, but it’s overcast so some of us decide to check out Siena. It would only be sensible to take my fully charged phone with me.
- Turn phone on but still don’t check email. (Over a day – whoop! What an achievement!)
- Stupidly check Facebook, though, where I have a message about a mastermind meeting I should be attending by Skype. Rather than sending apologies, I say I’ll look for a place with wifi when I get to Siena for lunch.
- Drive to Siena.
- Spend a few hours touristing it up among Italian architecture and art.
- Over lunch try to connect to wifi.
- Realise Italians don’t do wifi.
- Cut my losses and send apologies for the meeting via 3G.
- Spend time over lunch only half-enjoying myself because I should’ve just excused myself in the first place.
- And now I’m thinking about work.
- Forget about work as the uh-mazing mozzarella and tomato bruchetta arrives. Back in holiday zone.
- More street-wandering, people-watching and countryside-driving for the afternoon.
- Back at the villa, just as I’d forgotten about work, I decide to check my email for the first time in two days.What???? The world hasn’t stopped working without me? Relieved and offended in equal measure.
- Cook dinner and partying with friends, a teensy bit glad I had checked my email ‘because now I can relax’. Pah!
- Moonlit midnight swim.
Tuesday, 4 June 2013
- Breakfast then swim.
- More reading by the pool. Did I mention I’m reading about making money? So relaxing!
- Actual whole day off.
Wednesday, 5 June 2013
- Checking emails.
- Wedding preparation.
- Actual whole day off!
Thursday, 6 June 2013
- Most gorgeous wedding ever.
- Followed by much dancing and drinking.
- Very much an actual whole day off.
Friday, 7 June 2013
- And I’m in holiday mode. Four full days off – not bad!
- Mostly chilling by pool and recounting the events of the day and night before.
- Sneaky emails.
- Wiped out and looking forward to something resembling a routine when I get home. Unheard of!
- Reschedule my flight for the next day instead of heading back to Rome. Craving routine rather than looking forward.
- BBQ on the lawn for our last night.
- Early night.
Writing on the road… and eating gelato in paradise
Saturday, 8 June 2013
- Goodbyes. Sad times!
- Lots of driving and ambling around random places on the way to Pisa.
- Morning wandering the hilltop medieval village of San Gimignano and eating the most insane Gran Marnier chocolate hazelnut gelato in the Universe.
- Last lunch of pizza and beers.
- Body is craving routine as much as my brain. Opt for lots of veggies.
- Visit a hellhole of a beach near Pisa. Collectively decide the holiday is well and truly over, despite being in hysterics about how bad a beach can be. (Here’s an image for you: a dog crapping in the sea next to where two of my mates were paddling… Yup, that happened.)
- Check in at Pisa airport and squash into departure lounge. Curse myself that I’m not in business. This is the busiest and smallest departures space I’ve seen.
- Read some ebook and self-publishing articles on the way home and finish off a business book.
- Write a to-do list for Monday.
- Lift to my house in the UK.
- Fall into bed and sleep for two days.
When all said and done, we all need to take a break now and then. In case you didn’t catch the not-so-subtle message in there, I stress that travel isn’t necessarily that break.
But a holiday can be. Then again, I needed a holiday to get over the holiday.
Hmm, where will I go to next?