Anasayfa / Ekonomi Haberleri / 5 things I learned while traveling with my wife and adult children

5 things I learned while traveling with my wife and adult children

If you’re healthy, one of the best parts of unretirement (working part time with free time for other things) is the chance to travel when you want, where you want. 

Even better is the ability to travel with your spouse and adult children, as I just did in the Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks and environs. If you’re lucky, as I was, you’ll learn about a new locale, your loved ones and liberating technology.

Here are five takeaways from our trip that could help you have a grand time traveling with your adult children:

Plan the vacation together as much as you can but give yourselves the freedom to improvise

I began researching this six-day trip a little more than a year ago, because I’d been told we’d need to book National Park lodging that far in advance.

Originally, seven of us would be going. My wife, Liz, and I would fly from New Jersey to Jackson Hole, Wyo., where we’d connect with our Los Angeles screenwriter son, Aaron, and his film archivist wife Leigh Anne as well as our son Will (Aaron’s screenwriting partner), his wife, Jen (an attorney), and Jen’s psychologist mom, Karen.

As architect of this trip, I enlisted a travel agent for help selecting our lodging and arranging tours.

I thought we’d stay in a West Yellowstone hotel and then a Jackson-area hotel because my wife and I were concerned that the park lodges have no air conditioning and little or no Wi-Fi or cell service. But the rest of our group preferred an in-park lodge for Yellowstone. Liz and I acquiesced and booked one as well as an upscale resort in Teton Village, Wyo.

After reviewing excursion choices from our travel agent, we locked in a wildlife tour in the Tetons and a scenic float trip on the Snake River, deciding to see Yellowstone on our own. We gave ourselves plenty of time to figure out where and when to see the sights after arriving in Wyoming.

A few months ago, Will and Jen learned they’d be having a baby in September. So, they and Jen’s mom needed to cancel; I unbooked their rooms and their tours. Our seven-person trip became a four-person excursion.

Leigh Anne is the trip planner in her household, so she and I researched how to make the vacation enjoyable and efficient. The four of us then talked things over on a FaceTime call where Leigh Anne offered to make two dinner reservations and I said I’d make a third. We’d keep all other meals open.

The vacation was happening!

Let technology be your friend 

In our case, two clever apps worked wonders.

The first was Turo, a peer-to-peer car-sharing platform available in the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Australia (think of it as an Airbnb for cars). Jen and Will recommended Turo after using it on a Hawaiian vacation.

Turo lets you pay to use someone’s car or SUV that they’re not using, getting it and dropping it off wherever you two agree. This service can be especially helpful these days, when car rental company prices are steep and their auto availability can be limited.

We rented a 2018 Subaru Forester through Turo and couldn’t have been happier with its roominess, drivability and cost.

The second tech helper was the GuideAlong app, a GPS-based audio guide whose friendly voice plays over your car’s speaker and activates when you reach a specific location, telling you about where you are and where you’re headed.

GuideAlong, with audio tours in the U.S., Canada and Australia, came highly recommended from a friend of Liz’s who recently visited Yellowstone.

Its best feature — especially in a remote area like Yellowstone/Grand Tetons — is that GuideAlong works even when your cell service or Wi-Fi doesn’t. The price varies by tour; our two-park fee was $19.99.

Before you take your next vacation, see if there are any apps or tech platforms that could make the trip easier or more fun.

Enjoy the chance to learn more about each other — and maybe about yourself 

Although Liz and I were sad that Will, Jen and Karen couldn’t join us — though we’ll see them soon to celebrate the baby’s birth — I was grateful she and I could deepen our relationships with Aaron and Leigh Anne.

Leigh Anne introduced me to a world of pop culture experts and celebs I never knew. Her infectious smile and big heart during the trip made Liz and I even more grateful that she and Aaron are a pair.

I gained a deeper understanding of Aaron’s screenwriting projects and the brutal writer’s strike keeping our sons from working right now. I also had an opportunity to see his warmth and learn about his love of animals, including the bison, elk, bald eagles and bears (one, a grizzly, we think) we saw together. In addition, Aaron was a fine navigator while I drove, keeping us all from getting lost.

The vacation also brought Liz and me closer, as well as letting us share our neuroses and even laugh about them.

Force yourself to try new things while seeing new places 

When vacationing with an adult child, introduce yourself to foods or experiences for the first time — especially if your child is braver than you, as Aaron was for me.

Aaron is more adventurous with food and drinks than I am, so I screwed up my courage to try new offerings.

Before this trip, I’d never eaten bison chili or drank a huckleberry shake or a Sloshie (two famed Jackson treats; the latter is a fruity alcoholic concoction). I now have and liked all three.

Nor had I ever driven near wildlife. While motoring through Yellowstone and listening to GuideAlong voice-over artist Dave Pettitt, we found ourselves part of a “bison jam,” requiring us to stop on the highway and let a huge furry friend meander past our SUV.

By our estimate, we saw over 500 bison including ones we jokingly named Peabo Bison, Mike Bison and Brian Grazer.

Liz and I aren’t great hikers, but Aaron and Leigh Anne are. So, we all hiked to and from the extraordinarily colorful Grand Prismatic Falls of Yellowstone and the majestic Hidden Falls of the Grand Tetons.

While none in our posse were brave enough for whitewater rafting, Aaron, Leigh Anne and I took our first river float trip. Liz opted out due to the rain.

The author stuck in a ‘bison jam’.

Richard Eisenberg

Finally, stay calm when things go awry — as they almost certainly will at least once 

Airlines notoriously delay or cancel flights these days, which can ruin travel plans and almost ruined ours.

To travel home, Liz and I were scheduled to take one American Airlines plane from Jackson Hole to Dallas and another two hours later from there to Newark, N.J. We needed to get home so Liz could work the next day and we could pick up our boarded dog.

But when we woke on our last morning in Wyoming, we learned our first flight had been so delayed we wouldn’t make the connection. There were no later flights from Dallas to Newark.

After several calls to American and a few Google flight searches, we discovered one way to get to Newark was by finding our way to the Idaho Falls, Idaho, airport for a flight to Dallas in time to make our connection. Just one obstacle: the Idaho airport was two hours away and we needed to return our Turo to the Jackson Hole airport.

I began calling car services to find a ride to Idaho Falls. One said its company would charge $500. Another didn’t offer that ride but a representative said I should call “Mike” at another car service. I did and learned that Mike’s driver, Dave, would get us to Idaho Falls for $250. No bargain, but when you’re in a crunch on vacation, you do what you have to do.

Dave got us there, we made our flights and arrived home just past midnight. The next day, we picked up our dog and Liz got to work.

Now, I’m starting to think about where the eight of us might travel once Will and Jen’s baby is old enough. That day can’t come soon enough.

İlginizi Çekebilir

Pope Francis calls for ‘ethical reflection’ on AI

Pope Francis is concerned about artificial intelligence and whether it will be used for good …

Bir cevap yazın

E-posta hesabınız yayımlanmayacak. Gerekli alanlar * ile işaretlenmişlerdir

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d blogcu bunu beğendi: