January 24th, 2006


pre-travel angst

I'm having my standard pre-trip "uh oh" moment. This is pretty normal for me, especially when going somewhere new: "Wait, what if it's horrible? What if all the planning I've done so far is wrong and I have an awful time? Why didn't I decide to go somewhere that I know I'll have a good time! Maybe I can cancel the trip..." (When going somewhere I've been before, like, say Guatemala, the internal dialogue goes, "What if it's not as great as I remember? What if I see that awful guy from X again? Why am I going to the same place? Shouldn't I try something new? Maybe I can cancel the trip..."

Needless to say, I never cancel the trip, and I've yet to have a horrible time, but that doesn't stop me going through the motions of waking myself up excessively early to agonize over it as if I might, anyway. This trip, of course, isn't even optional, since the first half of it is for work, and I would be seriously insane to go to Puerto Rico for three days of work and then come home without doing any islandy things.

I decided on the hotel near the beach, because it's not my MO. Normally, especially when going to the tropics alone, I aim to have a quiet, meditative sort of experience. For example, when I was on Roatán, I tended to sleep from 9pm-5am, get up and swim at dawn, SCUBA during the day, get an early dinner, and then read on my porch until it got too mosquito-y, then bed. It was great, and very relaxing, beautifully introspective, and obviously an important time for me. But this trip is only 3 days (the vacation part, anyway) and I'm trying new things, so I'm thinking doing a bit of the drinking on the beach is just the thing. And I'm way more likely to do that if the bar is right downstairs rather than a few blocks away, especially because my natural inclination when in an unknown, possibly shady area is not to be wandering around after dark.

kcatalyst accuses me of justifying a splurge with my interpersonal development project, which is probably true, though, hey, it's not really a stretch, even. It's a funny thing to push myself on this sort of thing, though, because even though I want to be that kind of person who's relaxed and easy in social settings, I'm often not, so by forcing myself (or strongly encouraging myself, at least) into such a setting, I'm also causing myself all sorts of internal drama: "What do you mean we're staying at a hip hotel with a great bar?? You hate bars!" says my self to myself. (I made the reservation, and because it's short notice, I'm already past the cancellation deadline. Which is a good thing... mostly :)

Intellectually, I know I'll have a good time, and if I don't, I can always change boats midstream, but the definition of my pre-travel angst is that it is reason-resistent. How pesky is that?? On the bright side, my understanding is that I'll be right on the premier gay beach in Puerto Rico, so I bet the people-watching will be outstanding, if nothing else!


My cell phone more or less gave up the ghost today, forcing me to resort to newer mobile technology. This is both exciting and scary. The truth is, although the technology I know and love, I know and love, I'm a bit of a stick-in-the-mud with regards to new stuff. When I'm an old woman, I will say things like, "This newfangled bluetooth technology is so amazing!"

The nice man at the Verizon store was very helpful and only snickered a couple of times when I asked such astute questions as, "So, I can both make and receive calls with this phone? That's so cool!" and "Wow, it even has a color screen?"

Now, I need to learn how to use my nifty new phone, which also happens to have a camera! Did you all know phones come with cameras installed now? Dude, that's so cool! I also have a month of free internet on the phone, which I used to look up my favorite sushi place near home and order dinner on my way home. Someday, I may even figure out how to post the pictures I take to this very livejournal. Perhaps even while I'm in Puerto Rico!

Speaking of Puerto Rico, just writing about my angst this morning helped, and now I'm feeling much more mellow about the whole thing. I mean, how bad can it be if my default plan is to sit on the beach and drink cocktails?