Friday Four – Travel 2

In the Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio, we shared the space with a Pokemon Convention, and my son posed with a giant inflatable Pikachu. To be honest, he was never much of a Pokemon fan. But who can resist a photo with a really, really big Pikachu?

I did a Friday Five last week about travel. (Friday Five is a weekly blog prompt.) But I focused only on the question about my best trip ever, because I couldn’t narrow it down to just one, and instead of one, I listed five. I like the other questions, too, so I’m going to answer them now, as a Friday Four. The topic is travel, something I am so missing, since we’ve all been on lockdown since March.

1. Where did you travel on your last vacation or other big trip?

I’m not sure what counts as a “big trip.” Earlier this year we traveled up and down the East Coast a bit on various college interview and audition visits. But they were always rushed, and always to places I’d been before, so I’m not going to count those.

Last year I went on a hybrid road/plane trip that was rather complicated. As soon as school ended in late June, my son, Jon Morgan, and I drove west to Columbus, Ohio. My husband met us there by air, a couple days later, because he had a conference here in D.C. for work and couldn’t miss any more of it than necessary. I know, Columbus does not sound exciting. It was not. We were there for the national PTA conference, because my teenager, then just finished with his junior year of high school, was being given a national PTA Reflections award for Music Composition. We met Bob at the airport on Saturday, a few hours before the ceremony.

Besides the ceremony itself — and a 25-foot inflatable Pikachu at the convention center, where the PTA was cohabiting with the Pokemon Convention — the most memorable thing about our time in Columbus was a huge indoor marketplace a few blocks from the hotel, with all kinds of really good food.

Sunday we drove to the airport so I could pick up a rental car. Then Bob and Jon Morgan drove our car back home while I drove the rented car to New Orleans, with an overnight stop along the way. I had a conference to attend in Baton Rouge and had a couple of days to spare before it started. I love New Orleans, so I was happy for the chance to spend some there. I stayed in the French Quarter, found a Little Free Library, listened to music, drank absinthe, and browsed the art galleries. I even bought some paintings.

Then I drove to Baton Rouge for the National Federation of Press Women conference. Normally I just would have driven home. As you have by now surmised, I like road trips. But I had to be home that day because my father and stepmother were coming to visit. So I had my large tubs of conference stuff shipped, and I flew from Baton Rouge to Washington National to be home in time.

I guess that counts as a big one.

2. Where do you dream of traveling on your next vacation when it’s safe to travel again?

We had planned to visit Scotland and England this summer, and I’m still hoping we can do so next summer. But Italy is calling me too….

3. Where are you likely to actually travel to on your next vacation when it’s safe?

I think there’s an excellent chance that we really will go to Scotland and England. But if overseas isn’t feeling safe, or if Europe is still closed to Americans, we’re also considering a U.S. road trip to the West Coast.

4. Do you prefer to vacation to new places each time or to familiar places — or maybe you prefer to stay home?

Both. I love visiting new places. But there are also places I enjoy revisiting. It seems that there is always something new to see or some new route to take, even if I have been somewhere multiple times.

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