I Want To Be George Bailey And See The World

In 1946’s  “It’s A Wonderful Life”, George Bailey exclaimed, “I’m shakin’ the dust of this crummy little town off my feet and I’m gonna see the world.”  While I don’t think I live in a crummy little town (but I have before), I have a confession.  I don’t want to work!  I’m ready for vacation season to kick in and I’m ready to fly!

In the almost 12 years that Miss ABBA and I were together, I only went on three vacations without her and one of those was school-related.  In 2006, I went to Tunica, Mississippi, for a weather conference as part of my meteorology certification.  In October 2009, Ray had a conference in Reno, Nevada, so I went along with him and we stopped in Lake Tahoe, California for an extra day.

(Ray & Anthony in Emerald Bay, South Lake Tahoe, California)

And, in April 2010, he had another conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, and I went along for that and even took a “Swamp Tour” looking for alligators and above ground cemeteries.

While I had separation anxiety from Miss ABBA, I’m sure she didn’t miss us because she got to stay in Chicago those three times with Christopher and Mr. Panda, the shar-pei that has spent many doggie-sitting stays here in the Quad Cities with us.

Miss ABBA loved to R-I-D-E.  Keep in mind that she lived in Ohio for two years, Chicago for two years, Maryland (30 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean) for almost 1.5 years, and in the Quad Cities for six years.

That means she made countless trips to Chicago, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Spirit Lake, Iowa.  And, she had two longer trips.  The first came when she was just over a year old.  We drove a few hours from Youngstown, Ohio, to Athens, Ohio, for a wedding on Saturday, and then from Athens, Ohio, to Buffalo, New York (seven hours) the next day for a REBA concert.

And, she even did an international trip from in the summer of 2007 from Moline to Chicago to pick up Mr. Panda and Christopher.  From there, it was off to northeastern Ohio to pick up Granny Betty.  After a couple of days there, it was off to Orillia, Ontario, Canada for a few days to see REBA again!  Two countries for Miss ABBA in one week.  She even had her own papers to cross the border that they didn’t even check! 🙂

(ABBA illegally swimming  in Lake Couchiching in Orillia, Ontario, an hour north of Toronto)

In my adult travels, I went to Jacksonville, Florida, in 1987, followed by my first time on a plane to Houston,Texas, for Halloween 1992, then Cancun, Mexico and Las Vegas, Nevada, back in 1993, and several times to Palm Springs, California, in the late-1990s.

(Cancun, top, and Anthony climbing the Chichen Itza Ruins, bottom two)

As you already know, Ray and I are heading to Las Vegas this October to celebrate my birthday with Madonna!

Before that, we have a couple of weekend trips to Dubuque, Iowa, planned to stay in a cabin that sits on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River for a little hiking.

We’re going to spend the week of Memorial Day at Ray’s parents’ house right on Spirit Lake.  I think I’ll go fishing this time.  It’ll be the first time since I graduated high school!  I used to go fishing almost every summer weekend as a child.

Later this summer, we’re heading to Fort Dodge, Iowa, for Ray’s 30th high school reunion, and then to western Kentucky a month later for my 30th high school reunion!

And, in September, I’ll accompany Ray to Houston, Texas, when he attends a conference.

Did I mentioned Las Vegas and Madonna at the MGM Grand in October?? 🙂

While most of these fun getaways will be relatively inexpensive, there are several real vacations that I want to experience while I’m still young enough to enjoy it!

My number one choice would be a long Alaskan Cruise.

My second choice is a Mediterranean Cruise that would begin or end with a few days in Tel Aviv, Israel.

(Tel Aviv, Israel, bottom two pictures)

Third would be a trip to Scandinavia with most of the time in Sweden.

Fourth would be New Zealand.

And, my fifth choice is Hawaii.

Now, if only I could win the lottery.  Working isn’t going to get me there. 🙂

Where would you like to travel?  Or, where have you been that’s fun?

“I’ve been tellin’ my dreams to the scarecrow, ‘Bout the places that I’d like to see, I said, ‘friend do you think I’ll ever get there’, Ah, but he just stands there smilin’ back at me, And how do you keep your feet on the ground, When you know, that you were born, you were born to fly.”



8 responses to this post.

  1. We did a Disney cruise in December–first cruise! It was so much fun. I would do it again and for a longer stay! Gretel would love it and it’s like a honeymoon for you and Ray because there are so many kids things to do! There is one to Hawaii!

    I hope you’ll go west again. This time stop by New Mexico!


  2. Janice,

    Thank you for the input. I’ll have to check that out.

    I’ve always wanted to go to Santa Fe, even to live, and I’ve never been there. 🙂



  3. Posted by Kathy Markham McCoy on February 19, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    My dream has been to visit London & the rest of England since I was in my early teens. Then Ireland since I’m close. I’d also love to go on an Alaskan cruise, I would love to see the glaciers. Don’t think it will happen for me now.

    Travel while you are young & can move around, Anthony. And post lots of pictures so all of us can visit vicariously. 🙂


  4. Posted by Cinchy on February 19, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    Peeps I have been to Hawaii twice the first time I stayed for 9 months on the North Shore of Oahu I was 18 and followed my surfer boyfriend over there.
    We shared a house on Sunset Beach with some other surfers it was an amazing adventure.
    I have been to Canada and Mexico but been overseas.
    The only place I ever want to go now is Palm Springs to see my Grandkids , kids, family and friends !
    Hope you get to go everywhere you want to go!

    So I guess this means you won’t be getting a new puppy anytime soon 🙂


  5. Cindy,

    That’s awesome that you were there as a surfer dudette for 9 months!

    Palm Springs is amazing with or without grandchildren, but that’s icing on the cake!

    No puppy for us anytime soon!



  6. Kathy,

    You can have Ireland and England since neither fascinates me. Don’t give up home. Get to Alaska and have someone help you mobilize!



  7. Posted by Larry Newingham on February 22, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Awesome trips you all have taken, would love to see the Golan heights. And Sweden would be awesome (great hockey) and blonde women


  8. Larry,

    If we make it to Sweden before you, we’ll let the blonde women know you’re coming over to see them!



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