As a 'traveller' I always feel the need to get out and explore virtually as soon as I've landed. Normally my holidays don't stick to one location and spending time lazing by a pool or on a beach is virtually unheard of. After an hour of doing this I feel guilty and wonder what else I could be doing to make better use of my time and see more.
Whilst this approach to travel generally suits me there are times that I wish I could just relax and not pressurise myself to be continually busy.
The question is why should I feel guilty doing what most people take for granted when they go on holiday abroad?
In 2015 in the UK we hardly saw the sun so a week in Morocco was the ideal chance to feel the caress of the sun on my pale white limbs. This holiday was going to be just that. An opportunity to relax by the pool with a cocktail and to not be busy every moment of the day.
I somehow forgot the guidebook and my downloaded trip advisor guide failed to work which immediately removed a certain pressure of what I should be seeing or doing.
Instead I walked around without a map or specific goals and as a result immediately felt less pressure and more relaxed.
I learnt that lazing by a pool isn't actually a bad thing as sometimes your body does just need time to recuperate. Despite lazing by the pool most days I still managed to walk about 7 miles a day, visited all the places I wanted to go and slipped in a cheeky overnight visit to the mountains.
I didn't visit everything on the must see list and for once I didn't care.
Call this revelation empowerment or stupidity it doesn't matter. Perhaps I have finally learnt that just "being" and relaxing are not bad things but rather something we all need to do from time to time.
Hopefully I will carry this lesson forward into 2016 and occasionally allow myself to go away without the pressure of having to be continually busy seeing the must see sight, the best activity or the place no other tourists really know about!
What do you think? Should we be continually busy when we travel or go on holiday, or, is it OK to occasionally lie by the pool and miss out on what other people think you should see?
Coincidentally, whilst laid by the pool in Morocco I saw the poolside fill up with glamorous film extras and directors. I discovered the basement of the hotel was being used to film scenes in a new Jennifer Aniston film about the Iraq War called "The Yellow Birds" based on the award winning 2012 novel by Kevin Powers. It goes to show that interesting things happen all around us we just need to pause to actually see them!