This will be the first time I’ve traveled for more than a week in… well, in forever. As we prepare for this trip, I have gained a new appreciation for people that travel a lot for work, or that regularly take long trips, even if it’s to a family cabin in the woods. There is SO MUCH to think about when you’re going to be gone.
So what does it take to prepare for the Sauerkraut Summer Road Tour? Here’s my list of Unexpected Things to Consider. Maybe you’ve experienced these things too.
• The idea of comfort is paramount. We take so much pleasure from being at our Home Base. The spot on the couch that’s “ours” where our dog or cat sidles up beside us. The one coffee cup we choose every time if they’re all clean and put away. The feel of your own sheets at night. As I think that we are purposefully choosing to leave all those things behind, I start to look for the things on the road that will bring me comfort. So, I will secretly be packing three things: my favorite baseball hat, humom’s favorite travel mug, and Sauerkraut’s favorite bed. Well… guess it’s not so secret anymore.
• Do not let the clock rule you. Any trip, whether a vacation or a business trip, whether it’s 100 miles from home or on another continent, usually comes with a full itinerary. It would be easy to think only about where we need to be next, where to go, when to get there, rush-rush-rush. And while I REALLY don’t want to be Justin Bieber who shows up an hour late for his own concert, I’m going to try my best to not let the itinerary rule my every every waking moment.
• Remember, there’s a Target store in almost every city. I start to think that if I don’t remember to bring this doodad, or that widget, then I’ll be without it until I get home. In honesty, I have to remind myself that other than humom, Sauerkraut, and some key electronics, everything else can be bought on the road if I forget it.
• The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep. There are few things as valuable, especially when being out of my comfort zone, as a good night’s rest. I’m guessing that sleeping in an RV will, at least for the first few nights, provide less than perfect sleep. And on any vacation or trip, we want to see everything, to experience everything. But without adequate rest, even the best of us can become ill, irritable, or unenthusiastic. So from now until Travel Day 1, my mantra is Early To Bed!
• There are more people in the world than we could ever meet. As I look forward to the trip, one of the things I’m most excited about is the great people we’ll meet along the way. Whether it’s at a Meet and Greet, or at a rest stop along the road, we have an opportunity to get to know great and caring people from across the country. So if you’re nearby, come and chat with us!
• Finally, Let it all sink in. Maya Angelou said, “You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot - it’s all there. Everything influences each of us.” So as we’re driving, meeting, talking, seeing, smelling, and telling, I need to remind myself to experience it all - to pay attention to what’s happening around me, to look people in the eye and get to know them, and to remember I may never pass this way again, so let it influence me in a positive way.
The purpose of Sauerkraut’s Summer Road Tour is to bring awareness around animal welfare issues, special-needs adoption, volunteerism, and to support these great organizations across the country. We hope to give a voice to the animals that without us all could so easily be forgotten. If you have any tips for a successful road trip, please let me know!
…and wish us luck on the Wide Open Road!