Pre-pandemic, I always considered part of every trip the excited feeling I experienced before leaving. Thinking about what to pack, how to fit everything in the suitcase, traveling to and from the airport, all factored into the planning. Sometimes imagining the trip was as much fun as going on one. Visualizing what I would do, what could happen (or not!) and learning about the destination contributed to the anticipation. In some ways the anticipation I felt heightened the thrill of traveling.

I have to confess that over the years globalization did diminish some of the anticipatory excitement. Part of the traveling experience also included being able to buy, taste, or drink new things. Many of these things are now available locally, or even in the grocery store! It detracts a little from the experience to have these wonderful things readily available.

The many months of lockdowns and social distancing restrictions altered my traveling anticipation scale. Now I feel excited anticipation about being able to see loved ones without a mask, and maybe be close enough to talk without shouting. The thought of actually traveling somewhere via plane or train still seems far away, but going somewhere by car is possible. My travel distances have shrunk, but I feel confident the same excited feelings will return when I make a plan to go anywhere. Even if it’s only a short drive away.

The thrill and desire to see something new and change my scenery is still strong. I know a lot of people have explored virtual traveling, or seeing the world through the computer, during lockdowns. In some ways it’s better than nothing. However, unless the experience comes with sounds and sensations, I can’t imagine feeling that excited about it.

I don’t have anything planned, but I’m anticipating making up for lost time once the good weather returns. Hopefully by then things will be more stable with the pandemic. I would love to go anywhere.

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