2024-02-11: trips

pre-2023 being the years of no-leaving, housebound year after year after year. i still remember the christmas of 2020, just me and my partner and our dog in our quiet house. our first christmas with just us, no family or friends. and just the one dog. our first dog, who we'd got as a puppy, had died two months before. our younger dog a very different personality. bossy but quiet. he didn't bark for his breakfast every morning at 6. i no longer feared late nights. we started sleeping in for the first time in a decade and a half.

and so last december's trip felt necessary, kind of vanquishing all that, and it was mixed, but it was still good. the memory of being ill for almost a third of the trip has started to fade. i still remember it, but it doesn't hang over the trip in the same way that it did. i had a good time, as well as a bad time.

and now we're finalizing plans for trips this year: for a concert, and for various other things. this time, we're driving. fill up the tank and drive. these are my favourite kinds of trips, not least of which is because, judged to be a bad driver by most people i know, i don't have to do the driving. so i sit and chat and we listen to music, i watch the landscape and let things tumble over in my mind. and all this is months away, but that doesn't matter. i'm excited and it's good and you can't stop me.

my parents are also talking about renting a cottage in the summer, having everyone over. hoping we can make this work. need to make this work. they did a similar thing back in 2007, and i told them i couldn't make it, that i was in the midst of a big project at work, which i was, but man. what i didn't realize then: work will never care about you. when you die, your job will be posted before your obituary. so i hope the cottage thing works out this year. it's been a while since i've seen my whole family. it'll be good to see everyone again.