Traveling always feels like a gift to me. Whether it’s a road trip for the day or a month long journey, I feel lucky to be able to experience. Sometimes it’s as simple as a morning brunch out locally when typically we make breakfast at home. Other times it’s watching the sunrise over Angkor Wat after trekking to Cambodia for that remarkable moment. Either way, it’s a celebration of the everyday in a new and defining way.
I think I’ve mentioned it before; I’m turning forty in a few weeks. It’s fairly mind-blowing to think I’ve been on the planet that long and have friends for more than half my life. When my husband asked what I wanted for my birthday, it wasn’t a difficult answer and he knew it before I even opened my mouth. An adventure and time were all I asked for. I know, sounds strange to some as many are interested in material objects or sparkly things, but for me, travel has always been the vice and the gift all rolled into one. I have many friends who experienced this same milestone either a few years prior to me or earlier this year. It’s interesting to see who wanted to delete their birthday from all forms of social media and who wanted to shout it from the rooftops at a gala event filled with people or anything in between. I wonder, do our wishes change as we age? Are there more people who look for experience than things as the years tick by or does it still depend on the person? How do you celebrate?
Our anniversary is two weeks shy of my birthday. This year, it’s our fifth. For four of the five we’ve done exactly the same thing and love every minute of it. As it’s the summer in New York, we spend most of our time on the beach. Anniversary day or weekend usually includes a walk on the beach and the boardwalk, some form of chocolate or ice cream, a picnic on the sand and a few photos in front of the jetty where we first said ‘I do’. One year we missed our beach picnic and traded it in for a camping picnic on safari in the Serengetti where we hung with the big five and had s’mores with new friends as we watched the sunrise over Kilimanjaro. This year we hope to celebrate on the Long Beach sand with happy toes and some form of fun dessert.
Either way, simple pleasures of the everyday become more and more special when they help to celebrate a milestone. Whether it’s something sparkly, a material object, or time spent with friends and family-the choice is yours and one isn’t more right than the other. For us, we travel and spend time experiencing something new or something we love. On our anniversary, I hope to wiggle my toes in Long Beach sand and on my birthday introduce my toes to the sand of the Maldives. There’ve been birthdays with friends at a beach party and time spent celebrating my husband at his favourite restaurants with his favourite beer or dessert. We’re not big on huge fiestas any longer and would rather spend quality time with a few friends at a time to really get a chance to catch up. We seem to relish time spent, experiences had and memories made these days.
No matter what, we celebrate milestones. Sometimes, a typical Tuesday becomes a celebration and date night gets to take center stage over the entire week. Whether you’re turning forty or four hundred, having an anniversary or enjoying a Tuesday-how do you mark the occasion? Either way… I wish you the same happiness that the gifts of travel and time bring me. Enjoy your journey!