Weary of expensive vacations and tourist traps and seeking a new adventure that wouldn't break the bank or involve extensive travel time, my girlfriend and I decided to spend a long weekend at the inn to experience our first "staycation." The application form for The Chalfonte Hotel had a list of “chores” for which you could offer your talents. One could choose painting, landscaping, carpentry, cleaning or laundry. It’s ironic how all of the chores you dread doing at home suddenly sound fun when you get to “pick just one.”
13805 Blairs Valley Road Mercersburg, PA 17236
Liberty Mountain Resort
78 Country Club Trail Carroll Valley, PA 17320
296 Marsh Hill Road McHenry, MD 21541
There is no place like home and nothing more comforting than a hot cup of soup, especially when you are sick as a dog. Let me rewind and tell you about our recent (November of 2010) almost disastrous visit to Barcelona, Spain.
I asked my wife to join me at the end of a business trip to Barcelona. My mother-in-law was in town and she was nice enough to agree to look after our children. I made my hotel reservation at the new W Hotel Barcelona or as the locals call it Otel Doble Ve. Things started great. I have the dubious honor of being a Platinum member of Starwood Hotels which include W, Westin, and others. So I was upgraded to a suite with the view of the Mediterranean, “Wow” lighting, remote controlled curtains, rain forest shower and more. I looked forward to my wife arriving to town.
Many readers of this story may be native to Northern Virginia and know every hamlet from the Potomac River to the Blue Ridge. But for transplants like me, every trip in the man-van has the potential to uncover something interesting and new. On a recent excursion beyond the D.C. suburbs we discovered the wonderful little town of Winchester, VA.
Sunday was a day of mixed emotions. Sitting in a sweltering church made of tin for two and a half hours on a hard bench listening to the Creole prayer was trying. Watching the children sneak us smiles while they sat still in their Sunday best was heart-warming. Sharing communion with the Haitians was special. But the music was the true equalizer. You just could not sit still during their hymns. After the service, I took pictures of the children and they loved to gather around to see themselves on the digital screen. This was my favorite moment in Haiti.
re-entering the cyber-sports-work-commitments-back-to-school-phone-calls-doctors-appointments-$300-grocery-trips excessive land I call home. Not to mention, I was proud of my strong stomach in Haiti, especially as 8 of my 20 teammates were sick there .... but, I spoke too soon, and upon my return, I have had to call the doctor, eat bland foods, and really rest.
My husband and I just enjoyed a much needed getaway for the Memorial Weekend. Let me clarify that. HIS was a much needed vacation from work. Since I have recently become unemployed, it almost went against my grain to feel I have to get away from anything and go on a so-called “getaway.” Since escaping - albeit briefly - from the work world, leaving the nine-to-five in a cubicle, and doing what I’ve always wanted to have the time to do (be careful what you wish for...) - write, take photographs, paint - I just somehow couldn’t justify “getting away from it all,” and I almost felt guilty. Damn those nuns.
Page 1 of 3