Today as I was sitting around waiting for the flu to go away, my thoughts turned toward the week of my birthday, which is still over two months away. Except for those years when I can't afford it, I make it my business to either be visiting or doing something I've never visited (or done) before on my birthday. It just seems to me to be a good way to start a new year, and I've fortuitously thought ahead and asked for the week off already.
Because there is not much else to do when one is home sick and unable to sleep, it was nice to let thoughts drift to what it is I might do to celebrate. There have been some good past birthday week trips - my great Westward migration (featuring Carhenge and House on the Rock), New Mexico, and the year I went on a road trip to Ashland and back up the Oregon coast. There are so very many places that I would like to visit. The probablem is that while I can probably swing a treat, this is not going to be the year I fulfill dreams of Greece or Tuscany or even just going back to Berlin for a visit. As much as I'd like to branch out, I'm going to have to stick a little closer to home.
For a brief while, I thought about visiting the town in North Dakota where I was born. Yes, I know I've been there before, but having left it at a month old, I have no clue what it's like there - except for that it's small and that my mother finds it highly mockable.
When I was born, my dad was stationed at Grand Forks AFB, but I wasn't even born in Grand Forks. I was born in the nearby township of Mekinock. As far as I can tell, there is not much there. A little research ferreted out that Grand Forks is the Gateway to Canada (being a gateway doesn't sound to promising...all that means is no one wants to stay), but I wasn't able to find much on Mekinock. I think the City of Grand Forks website says it all. The first big story on the news and events page was entitled "Grease is bad for you and your sewers too." I'm getting the sense that a road trip to my homeland would be of the sort where I would be heavily relied upon to make my own fun.
So, I am left wondering what to do. Maybe it doesn't have to be something new, just something I know I'll enjoy. Rent a house at the coast for a few days for a little retreat? A trip to Seattle or road trip around part of Washington state? I've never visited Bend before. What about California? Leavenworth? Arizona? I don't know. A lot depends on weather if it's a road trip. I'm presently liking the idea of spending a few days in Seattle. I've never really stayed there for a longer visit. Or maybe I'll just find something interesting to do around here. Clearly, I need to get my hands on a map (or maybe just a person with some good suggestions). There is still time to think, I suppose, but I'm warning you ideas, I'll be on the look out for you!