Touring parts of Eastern Europe a couple of months ago took a big bite out of the finances. I’m glad I went and loved almost every minute of it, but I don’t think my kids are happy about that trip’s impact on the family vacation this summer.
So when the question of a family trip out of state came up, I came out with the concept of “stay-cations.” WHAT? Stay-cations? I nodded my head and smiled like it was the best concept since my recipe for Mora Mona’s,(Blackberry Dolls-A play on the Spanish word for blackberries and my nickname). This blackberry puree, vodka, and diet ginger ale drink refreshed me and my friends in the 90% humidity of Costa Rica a couple of years ago. That and floating in the turquoise water of an infinity pool. But, I digress.
“Yes a stay-cation, where we take mini-vacations here in our own county, without having to stay overnight in a hotel. You know, local fun, ummm, with locals.” My daughter’s eyebrows remained raised, my son ducked his head back behind the computer. “There’s lots of things we can do in this county,” I say, with a disturbingly bright smile that even scared me. It did not lower daughters eyebrows at all.
“We’ve done everything in this county, we’ve lived here all our life,” daughter said.
“Did you know we have a lighthouse at the beach, only six miles away?” The brow lower a half a centimeter. “And have you ever gone to Paradise Cove in Malibu?” Brows down, she’s listening.
“We can get to LA in an hour, can we go there?” daughter asked.
“Sure, you can plan a trip there for us.” A smile curves up on one side of daughter’s mouth.
“Mijo, any ideas?”
Head bobs while he looks at the computer screen. “I liked San Francisco when we went there six years ago. Let’s go back.”
He did not get the concept of a stay-cation.
“Local places, or LA or Santa Barbara,” I reiterate.
“Ah, then no, no ideas.” He puts in his ear phones.
I forgot about the conversation until today. Daughter read about the Los Angeles County Museum of Art exhibit on Tim Burton. “Can we go?” I nod my head and smile, I’m so proud of her for choosing a museum, until I remember that Tim Burton has those animated movies like Sweeny Todd and Beetlejuice. But I do like Edward Scissorhands.
Admission is usually reasonable and we can go and come back within a day so I say “Yes.” Then I look at LACMA’s site: admission is $20 bucks apiece, for 17 yrs. and over, which they are and parking is $10. Doors open at noon, so that means we won’t be back on the road until 5 p.m traffic, which means we have to stay later, like 7:30 to avoid said traffic, which means we not only have to eat lunch out but dinner too. And gas is still $3.89 a gallon at Costco. I don’t want to figure out the total right now.
I think I forgot to mention an important concept in the stay-cation definition. It’s supposed to be low cost, like free hikes to a lighthouse, or in Sycamore Canyon, Malibu & Santa Monica beaches, picnics, bike riding, festivals-that kind of stuff. But it’s too late. Daughter already picked a day that she had free. She tells brother about the Tim Burton exhibit.
“Oh, cool,” brother said and bobs his head again. “Can we go to San Francisco on the train? We don’t have to spend money on a hotel, or gas.”
It appears he did not get the concept of stay-cations either or maybe I need to brush up on my communication skills.