If you had $5,000 in your pocket and a week all to yourself…where would you go? What would you do? My cousin, Maren, is leaving this Wednesday for a semester in Peru. How wonderful. At 21, she has already spent a summer in Spain, and flown to Paris on a whim to visit her boyfriend. Boy, when I was 21…well, I digress. Let’s not go there, it’s rather depressing. Back to my first question: What would you do?
I’d like to imagine that I would hop a flight to Paris with just an oversized-suitcase and my journal tucked under my arm. I’d stroll the city and drink creamy coffee at street-side cafés, writing furiously to keep up with the magical fiction in my head. And every few chapters, I’d pen non-fictional accounts of lazy days and romantic nights.
Or maybe I’d grab a flight to Ireland, same trusty journal, and not-so-trusty golf clubs tagging along. I’d drive the wrong side of the road along hills of green, the wind whipping my hair through the little foreign car’s window. I’d play 18 holes in the cloudy light of day (scoring no higher than par) and find a quiet corner of a raucous pub In which to write a fantastic screen play while I drink black and tans and flirt with an Irish musician playing guitar, who also happens to be the owner of the pub (this one, and many others across the globe).
Or, maybe I’d wake up in the morning, enjoy a quiet cup of coffee, pack my suitcase and drive to the airport, where I’d pick a flight to LaGuardia, not caring how long I had to wait, because I have Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s latest novel in my purse. Each New York morning, I’d hop on the subway and head uptown, where I’d spend the first few hours of my day in one of the many writer’s cafés, clicking away on my laptop, trying not to stare at the best-selling authors around me. In the afternoons, I’d walk the streets, not leisurely, like in Paris, but with long, purposeful strides, the city wind whipping the scarf tossed casually around my neck. I’d duck inside open shops and buy fantastic outfits at designer boutiques. I’d spend my evenings on Broadway and drink Apple Martinis at a swanky bar, lit by the energy of Times Square.
If I had $5,000 in my pocket, I’d drive straight to the bank. I’d breathe a little easier, stand a little taller, and worry a little less. I’d pay a year’s worth of car insurance, get the carpets professionally cleaned and maybe, just maybe, buy a new flat screen for the family room. Then, and only then, would I log onto kayak.com and check out flights… to Disney World. I am a mom, after all. But I can dream, can’t I?