Has Anyone In History Ever Had A Successful "Staycation?"

I don’t mean, have you done one. But, was it actually fun and relaxing, like, you know, the real thing? I seriously want to know!

In today’s Times, Michelle Slatalla and her family attempt a Staycation. Hilarity – and some relaxation – ensues, but at the end of the day? Vacation, this ain’t. I get it; we all do. In these financially strapped times, and sans vehicle, the idea of exploring your hometown with the wondering eyes of a relaxed tourist sounds appealing indeed.

And I’ve tried it, I have. I’ve set aside full weekends for work-free fun. And it just felt like sitting around the house. I tried, but it reminded me of “camping” in our living room when I was a kid. Or, worse, I felt a terrible pressure to get out and do things, lots of things, all the shows and exhibits and restaurants I’d marked in the paper. When you go somewhere new, being there is half the battle; the very novelty is relaxing. I have a pair of friends who had a “staycation” honeymoon, taking a week off work and exploring the outer boroughs of New York. They loved it. But then, they have a really nice apartment.

There is an idea I’ve been kicking around with a few friends: a staycation apartment swap, in which we switch neighborhoods for a couple of days. Hence, novelty, change of scene, break in routine. The pitfalls are obvious. For one thing, not everyone wants people – especially friends – up in their private business, discovering – at best – how disorganized the closets are. The other issue is that, inexplicably, no one seems to want to vacation in the heart of a dangerous neighborhood far from subways, which makes the “swapping” part problematic. So to heck with “staycations”; the real phenomenon? “The Parental Bed and Breakfast.”

Our Hawaiian Holiday Without, Well, Hawaii [NY Times]

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