Warning: this rant contains material that some readers—particularly those living in countries with more extreme lockdown measures and more restrictive travel requirements—may find supremely whiny and annoying.  For that, I apologize.

Leave it to COVID to mess with my travel life once again.

Normally, I have our summer travel plans locked and loaded while there’s still snow on the ground:  Destination decided.  Flight booked or route mapped.  Accommodations reserved.  Daily itinerary more or less in final form.  Heck, I might even have my Travel Packing & To Do List printed and sitting primly on the desk.  No harm in being prepared.

But here we are, early May, and . . . nothin.’

We are trying desperately to get back to England this summer.  A tragic and unexpected death in the family this past winter necessitated our first—and hopefully last—Zoom funeral and has us yearning to be back with loved ones to share hugs, offer support, and generally just be together.

A travel corridor between the US and UK may be on the horizon.  This is our golden ticket.  Not only do we need the UK to let us vaccinated folk in unhindered, but we also need the US to do the same.  As unlikely as COVID infections are among vaccinated individuals, they do happen, and it would be just my luck to get an asymptomatic infection—or God forbid, a symptomatic one from some, say, horrid new Antarctic variant (B.6.6.6)—that prevents me from boarding my flight home to pay the bills, spring the rabbit from “summer camp,” maintain the home, free my garden from the weeds of travel-related neglect, and do the 462 other things I put off all school year with the promise of “I’ll get to it during summer break.”

Also, I’ve heard of people missing their returning flight because their COVID test results didn’t come back in time.  That’s a lot of stress, man.

If sufficiently relaxed intercontinental border crossings are not forthcoming, however, we will scramble to make some sort of domestic travel plans, but until I know for sure, I can’t make any plans of any kind, and it’s driving me batty!

So what do I do while I wait to see if the US and UK will agree to scratch each other’s backs?  I waste hours of time I don’t have Google Mapping road trip routes I can’t take, researching flights I can’t buy, and drooling over accommodations someone else will be staying in:

  • Beach vacation on the islands off of Sarasota, Florida
  • Eastern Oregon road trip with the travel trailer and the bikes
  • Fly/drive trip to California—Santa Barbara to Paso Robles, or San Jose to Paso Robles, or a giant circle that hits Lake Tahoe, Monterey, Carmel, and Yosemite
  • Braving the heat and humidity of the Southeast in Charleston, South Carolina
  • Out to Colorado to apologize to Leadville for cheating on it last year with Fairplay

And this is just my frontrunner list.  The possibility of petsitting around the country? If I let myself go down that rabbit hole, I probably won’t even make it to work this week.

My love of travel coupled with my inability to live in the present and my slightly obsessive nature are conspiring to do me in.

So what is a travel architect to do? Take a deep breath and wait . . . and dream . . . and hope the husband doesn’t notice that I’ve left the dishes half done and nearly all the tasks on today’s “must do” list unchecked because I’ve spent the last three hours playing around on Skyscanner.


Update: Summer Travel Is Imminent: California Wine Country, Here We Come!

58 thoughts

  1. I don’t travel as much as you do [did] but I feel the same way as you do. I’m tired beyond tired of being at home. All I’ve done now for over a year is wait to get on with my life. While I can be philosophical about this merely being a *pause* I can also be cranky about living this way.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I sympathize! I generally have all our travel totally organized before we see in the New Year. I have resorted to researching and then planning itineraries for future trips.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. To be honest, you were the main person I was thinking of when I wrote that warning.

      On that note, the MN governor just announced the lifting of capacity and restaurant restrictions beginning in about 4 weeks, and the mask mandate being lifted by July 1. I guess time will tell if it’s too soon for this loosening…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Not being able to travel is officially taking an emotional toll on me, too. It’s been exactly 21 month since my last trip outside of Ireland, and we have to wait another ten days before even inter county travel opens up in Ireland. I am fed up about the fact that all those holidays I thought I’d be going on this year have been postponed, disrupted or cancelled and that’s why, before I completely lose it, I decided that I don’t want to live a life where my only source of happiness is traveling. One thing you can do is to develop skills for future trips. I am learning to surf so when I visit Tofino, Vancouver Island I can fulfil my dream of catching waves during the sunset! Cheers and have a good day. Aiva 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The idea of international travel still strikes me as–I was going to say premature but what I really mean is terrifying. Even if the corridors open up, are you sure it’s a good idea?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Under the circumstances of our personal family tragedy, along with the CDC saying even international travel is low risk for vaccinated people (as long as precautions continue to be exercised), it feels like the right thing for us.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s really hard! And for me, a cycle. If I can’t travel I’ll indulge myself online. But indulging in on line travel planning only fuels my wanderlust. I hope things fall into place and you can make the trip.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I admit, I was like you and toyed around with Skyscanner and travel-planning in the month leading up to the pandemic, as well as a bit more after it started. The longing to travel internationally, even domestically, was brutal, and planning detailed itineraries didn’t make me feel better. It was fun, but unrealistic, and I’ve since stopped doing it (although I slip up from time to time…). I’ve learned to be very patient, as COVID’s still a thing and I also have work obligations to complete (i.e. passing my year-long probationary period) to make travel my priority. Our time will come, and I can feel that it’ll be very soon. Solidarity, comrade!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I know exactly what you mean!! I hope you’ll be able to make it over here in the not too distant future. We are supposed to be told today which countries are on this new traffic light system which the government is bringing in when travel (hopefully) opens up on 17 May. So fingers crossed the news from this will make things easier for you to get here. For me personally, I’m not in a rush to book any leisure travel. I mean I’d LOVE to be travelling again but just not at the moment (the stress of tests, cancellations, etc…arrggh!) But we are in a similar position to you regarding needing to see family, we want to get out to Australia if/when we can. A family member is unwell but we just don’t know when we’ll be able to get back out there. And from what I’ve read today, they are saying they might not open up until the latter half of next year!!! So who knows!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s tough going for those of us with unwell or other needy family situations abroad. I wish we could apply for some sort of waiver now that things are better vaccine-wise and given that it’s to do with a death in the family. No such luck, though.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s what we’re hoping, too. Every couple of days I Google “US UK travel corridor” and I keep seeing news stories about it with “pressure is mounting.” We’ll just have to wait and see… and hope!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I hope things safely open up for you across the pond. But I’m sure you’ll find something fun to do no matter what. 👍

    Nick Manning


    Liked by 2 people

  9. By sharing your challenges, you provided all us lesser travel mortals solace (and an excuse 🙂 ) for not having any significant trips in the summer hopper. I appreciate your always enlightening shares that are regularly sprinkled with humour. Especially, keep up the riveting UK reporting (I am very serious here). As one with a surname from England of course, I am determined to finally traverse the big pond as soon as possible.

    Should the Fair Lady and the Husband ever decide to lead a group there one day, I would very much like to be put in the know on that.

    Happy Trails– in Minnesota if that’s what it takes~! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for the compliments! I’m sure the husband would lead you on a trip to England tomorrow if he could. It’s something he’s often talked about doing. Unfortunately, the US just landed on “amber” on the UK’s traffic light travel system. Ugh.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Totally feel your pain!! We are desperate to get away. We have decided to start planning a trip here in the UK so that we at least have something. Luckily we have so many other things on right now that it is occupying us. Hope you get to come to the UK again soon 😊😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I was disappointed to find out a few days ago that the US is on the amber list. I guess we’ll be spending more time in a holding pattern. I just hate that! P.S. You have a great country so I’m sure you’ll find lots of great things to do and see!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I like your eastern Oregon idea. I would suggest, if you’re going that far, to push on 5 hours or so and visit western Oregon while you’re at it! Especially the coast. There’s no other place like it in the world (though I may be biased).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We did a coastal Oregon road trip a number of years ago. It was very beautiful but boy was it WINDY!! All the way up the coast, whenever I asked a local about it, they invariably replied that it is like that every summer, but that the winds calm down in the fall. Unfortunately, it is a documented fact that wind is my least favorite weather feature. 😦

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Interesting response from the locals, because actually, the winds are worse in the winter along the coast. But still, nothing like we see here on the Northern Plains!

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I’m just as bad with Skyscanner.. I am looking for that one trip to the Philippines to be with my fiance and it is so hard because of thr pandemic. It’s been a year and half since I last been with her and it kills me to no end and I still do not know when it will open up. I feel your frustration and double it with me.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I totally share your frustrations! We’ve been taking tons of weekend trips since we’ve been able to, but it’s really hard to actually plan anything major in case it doesn’t go ahead. We’ve actually got flights booked to Italy for late September but I’m so hesitant on planning the trip. Initially I wanted to hop over to Slovenia, but these days country-hopping just isn’t a thing you can do easily. Who knows what things will look like then? So I’m coming up with a back-up plan, but it just doesn’t feel the same knowing that it might not go ahead. It’s very hard to get excited. Definitely first world problems, but still! We are at the point where we need a break from all of this, right?

    P.S. so sorry for your loss. 😦 Zoom funerals are the worst… I mean in some ways, they’re good for people who wouldn’t be able to make it across the world, and it definitely opens up opportunities to bring people together in different ways in the future, but… very frustrating for those who *should* be there in person. 😦 I hope you make it over here to see family soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for your sentiments. You’re right – without Zoom we would have been completely absent from the funeral. We are awaiting June 7 to see what the updated “traffic light” system in the UK looks like…

      As for my post about summer travel plans, just yesterday I put out a new one saying that we now DO have summer travel plans. It’s amazing how quickly things can change.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. It has become a common thing & is taking an emotional toll on one and all !Not able to travel is quite frustrating in itself let alone missing the entertainment and merrymaking during a joy trip!Everyone is entitled for a refreshing change after working continuously for certain period!But this pandemic has played a spoilsport!Lets keep patient as this will also pass!keep happy,healthy & safe !💕

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I’ve settled for driving distance destinations visiting people I’ve really missed during quarantine. This means checking out small towns, I never would have thought of, but I’m weirdly excited about it!

    Liked by 2 people

  16. I really enjoyed this article. I can relate to the angst your feeling. My girlfriend and I moved back to Thailand in January 2020, right before COVID hit, full intending to travel around Southeast Asia some more.

    We’re more than ready for that door to open back up so we can revisit some places and explore some new ones.

    Keep that wanderlust going!

    Side question, what’s your favorite state you’ve been to in the US?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

      A fellow blogger friend lives in Thailand and he tells me the vaccine rollout has been very slow over there. I’m sorry to hear that.

      Colorado, hands down. But Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona are way up there as well.

      I hope you can get resume your travels soo!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, it’s been slow, especially compared to the US. I live in Phuket and I believe almost 100% of Thais are vaccinated and they’re now working on covering all the foreigners.

        Colorado is a beauty, truly loved that place.

        Enjoy your travels!

        Liked by 1 person

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