It’s not the destination but the journey.
One of my favorite things to do ahead of a vacation is to read up on my destination. But not just factual stuff about sites to see and the best places to eat. I certainly do that legwork too, but that’s really the provenance of my husband, the information-gatherer and map-lover. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve grown to love reading fiction based in favorite vacation spots. I think it’s a remnant from childhood when I loved reading historical fiction; I loved learning about the world without realizing it.
Before my honeymoon in Hawaii, I read two amazing books set in Maui, very close to where we stayed actually in Lahaina. Soon, I’ll dive into some set in the Palm Beach area. Not only does this give me a sense of the place before traveling, but it encourages a sort of deja-vu-like feeling once I’ve arrived. The shock of suddenly entering a new place is lessened and replaced with a friendlier, oh, it’s you, I-kind-of-already-know-you feeling that is awesome. And I can’t even express how wonderful it is to later re-read these books after a vacation. I’m always immediately brought back. It’s almost like I’ve extended the vacation and let’s be honest, who wouldn’t appreciate that?!
1. Haole Wood by Dee DeTarsio
2. The Aloha Quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini