"Surprise" Vacations

A few years back, Ivy and some friends found a website offering “surprise” vacations. It sounded to me like some kind of internet scam, but turns out it’s legit.


Here’s how it works. The customer decides when you want to go on vacation, how much you want to pay for your vacation, and who you want to travel with. The website then chooses your destination, makes travel and lodging arrangements. Here’s the “surprise” part. You don’t know where you are going until the day before your vacation starts. Oh, they provide hints, like what clothes you might need and a weather forecast, but that’s about it.


Ivy and her friends from her “dude” ranch days have been on several vacations arranged by the website.


Our twins are now seniors in high school. Last January, Ivy and Elaine discussed taking the twins on one of these “surprise” vacations during spring break. I was included in the conversation, oh I’m guessing, somewhere around February 15th. It was one of those, “Hey, Ivy and Girl Twin are going on a (no advertising here) vacation, during spring break. I hope you don’t care, WE’VE already bought the tickets.” Did you notice the WE’VE? To this day I wonder who WE’VE is?


If you noticed Boy Twin was not listed in the vacation plans. He turned them down. He decided to stay home and work. If there is anything that kid loves more than money, someone tell me what it is. He told me later, he thought he would end up in Montana or someplace like that. No disrespect to Montana as he loves to fish and hunt, but it was the wrong time of year for that.


Elaine did her best to convince me it was a vacation for us, also. We would have the house to ourselves, we could go to dinner every night in the state to the north. (No beervirus restrictions.) The house will stay clean. We can do anything we want.


The problem with Elaine’s plan was the thirty inches of snow we received the weekend before spring break. Trudging through snow to feed livestock and water and feed poultry is not as fun as it sounds. We did go to dinner several times, not in the state to the north. It seems that state suffered a little from their snowstorm and all roads were closed both in and out of the state.


Elaine was right about one thing. We had the house to ourselves. The house was quiet, eerily quiet. The only sound was the rhythmical thumping of Elaine’s loom going back and forth. Occasionally, the sound of the loom changed to the gentle whir of Elaine’s spinning wheel going round and round. I was able to keep myself busy letting the dogs in and out. The dogs were not happy about the snow and just could not get settled.


Elaine loves the quiet of the house when no one is home. Me? I need noise. I did get a little alarmed when Elaine stopped weaving and spinning yarn. She said, “Do you know where the sharpening stone is, I think I’m going to sharpen the cutlery.” Elaine knows ways to stay busy, which most people never think of.


Meanwhile, it was not all roses for Ivy and Girl Twin. They had to leave the house at 3:45 AM to catch a shuttle to the airport. On the shuttle, they opened their vacation itinerary instructions. They were on their way to SAN DIEGO. Nowhere near Montana.


From San Diego, Ivy and Girl Twin called Boy Twin. “Wow, you didn’t tell me you were going to San Diego.” “Well, that’s the surprise”. I’m guessing he might be regretting his decision. He made himself feel better by buying himself a welder.


I did have the opportunity to trudge through the snow out to the storage containers and fill yarn orders. Somehow trudging to the storage containers is not livestock feeding trudging.