As it turns out, 2011 surpassed even 2007 (my previous record travel year) for the number of trips I took. I have one more planned to wrap up the year: the annual Christmas vacation south, with Mom & Dad. Oh - and yes, at least one more business trips, perhaps two, between now and the end of the year.
So - before I forget - where did I go this year?
- February: business trip to Zurich, which included one day of skiing in Davos
- April: ski week in Vail, Co
- April: Spring Diva Camp, cycling camp with TotalCyclist, in Beaufort, SC
- May: 4 days in Southern California, with the Divas, for the Amgen Tour of California
- June: 24-hour trip to Philadelphia, for the TD Bank Philadelphia International Cycling Championship
- June: day trip to... Milton, On (40Km from Toronto), for the Canadian Road Cycling Championships - ok, not a major trip, but still a fun adventure
- July: 4-day weekend with Mom & Dad in Vail, Co
- July: business trip to London, which included a weekend in Paris coinciding with the final stage of the Tour de France
- September: Labor Day weekend visiting friends in Chapel Hill, NC
- September: long weekend in Quebec City and Montreal, for the Grand Prix Cyclistes World Tour races (and a visit home to Mom & Dad)
- October: Fall Diva Camp, cycling camp with TotalCyclist, in Jefferson National Forest, Virginia Read about Fall Diva Camp in Virginia - it was fantastic!
- November: one week trip to visit friends in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Mie-Ken, Japan
- December: weekend trip to Austin, Tx, to celebrate my friends' 25th anniversary
- December: week-long trip to Cancun with Mom & Dad for Christmas
I will finish the year with nearly 110 flights, Super-Elite status with Air Canada confirmed for 2012.
It was a great year. Fantastic, in fact. Almost every adventure involved a great set of friends, different almost on every trip. I got to explore new ground, undertake new challenges, meet new people, try new foods, and laugh! I laughed at myself a few times, but mainly, I had the kind of year where I could laugh with pure joy and delight at the wonderful experience that is my life.
If you're thinking, "alright, enough already, stop rubbing it in", I apologize. I don't mean in the least to be rubbing it in. If anything, this is my acknowledgement of the following things:
- I am bloody lucky
- 2011 was unique
- I am tired!
- The best adventures and trips were the ones shared with friends - the other ones should have been shared with friends
- I still feel bad about not being able to visit a friend in Geneva - I just couldn't fit it all in
- Adrenaline and endorphins are addictive; traveling is an adrenaline rush for me, and releases a whole bunch of endorphins; traveling less will lead to withdrawal symptoms
- Picking fewer destinations for 2012 is already proving difficult
- I hope friends will come visit me in 2012!
- Friendships extend beyond borders, time, cultures, work and family obligations; every once in a while, it's important to renew the bonds, get together and share some smiles
- Did I mention that I know I'm bloody lucky?
So here's to 2011, and planning for new adventures in 2012. Within another month or so, I should have fairly well-defined plans. I'll be happy to share them :-)