In keeping with my “holiday blog post” tradition, here I am again. Though not on holiday this time, just on the verge of one.
Tomorrow, we’re leaving on a jet plane to Bangkok for our summer vacation. And I’m terribly excited, for two reasons:
- My partner is coming with me this time, so there is no tearful goodbye in the morning as I rush off to the airport.
- It’s the first time in a really long time that I’m actually taking a break from work. I will be traveling sans laptop, and that is indeed terribly exciting.
Don’t get me wrong—the luxury to work from anywhere is definitely a plus, not a minus. But it does encourage me to take semi-holidays where I am in a different place and working minimal hours, but still working and spending a couple of hours on my laptop every day. I might be done by 12pm and have the rest of the day to relax, but I’m still starting off the day with work.
In fact, I don’t remember the last time I went on holiday without my laptop. It might have been a couple of days’ seaside holiday with my parents, which I suspect was in late 2020, but my Google Calendar has mysteriously decided to vanish all my calendar appointments from 2021 backwards, so I can’t confirm my hunch.
No, I’m lying. I think my holiday to Vung Tau with my partner in April 2021 was sans laptop, but I can’t be sure.
Anyways, that was only a couple of days. This time, it’s going to be a full two weeks without my trusted Dell. I don’t think I’ve spent this much time apart from it since my last trip abroad to Japan in… 2019? I don’t know anymore which year is which. Let’s just say pre-Covid.
This time, we’re going to be spending some time in a luxurious mountain resort, which will be our first time. Needless to say, I am greatly looking forward to it. We’ve done a luxurious seaside resort before and loved it—let’s see what difference the setting makes. We’re also doing touristy things in Chiang Mai and Sukhothai, all places my partner has never been to. So he’s excited (and I’m excited to be showing him around).
We’re also going to be spending a large part of our trip with my parents, so they also get to travel, which is something they don’t do often—so that’s a bonus. This will be my first trip with my dad since his cancer diagnosis last year. Fingers crossed his health holds up and he gets to fully enjoy this family trip.
As I’m usually blogging on holiday, the thought crossed my mind today to blog while I’ve still got my laptop around. I might well be in the mood and decide to write another post from the mountaintop with my phone, but I do hate writing on my phone so. It’s a less fluid experience and I don’t like straining my eyes on the small screen.
The thing I love about these holiday blog posts is they’re stream-of-consciousness writing. I’m writing whatever thought bubbles to the front of my mind, never knowing which word is coming next. It’s intensely freeing. Though I write regularly these days, it’s always for my newsletter where I’ve got to be focused and deliver value to my readers (my value proposition: make you “stop and think”)—I can’t just write, or you might say ramble, as I’m doing now.
The focused, structured writing is rewarding and enjoyable. But it’s not quite as cathartic as opening up my laptop and letting my fingers roam free on the keyboard, each word a springboard to the next. It’s lovely. Maybe this is why I keep coming back to write these holiday posts, because I enjoy the outlet so much.
Ah, I will actually be turning 33 during this two-week holiday to Thailand. Not a significant milestone age, but I do like the double 3s. I’m also highly anticipating my birthday treat. My partner asked me what present I wanted for my birthday (I’m notoriously difficult to buy for because I don’t usually want anything). I thought long and hard about it. And only one thing came to my mind.
Yes, for my 33rd birthday, the one and only present I want is a birthday cake. Specifically, a dark chocolate birthday cake with chocolate ganache and berries.
Nothing more, nothing less.
I am deadly serious about this birthday cake business. I even wrote the seller to check if the cake is dense and moist (the way I like it). They said yes.
Apparently, the smallest size is a 6-slice cake. As my partner is dairy allergic and cannot partake, upon my return from the trip I will have scrumptious cake to last me six days, if I behave.
Merely the thought of biting into that cake is giving me joy. I cannot wait.
I hope you’re all well. And if you like my writing and want to hear from me regularly, check out Val Thinks, my newsletter. It packs a far heavier punch. The writing is tighter. And it promises to make you “stop and think” every Friday (or Thursday depending on where you are in the world—I may have to re-think my newsletter send time at some point if I continue to amass more readers in the West).
Love as always,