The Monday After: Why Are Vacations So Exhausting?

Mr. Muse and I finally arrived home early afternoon yesterday after being away a week and a half.  Our flights were uneventful and we plunged into the cold as fuck brisk 7 degree F breeze of Madison with suitcases in tow, Cedric The Roaming Gnome safe in my satchel and Charlie The Traveling Chupacabra securely contained on the back of Mr. Muse’s travel pack.   Our Explorer started right up after sitting in the parking garage at the airport all those many days and with everyone intact and all luggage accounted for we headed off.

Do I need lotion? Perhaps just a little dab.

Do I need lotion? Perhaps just a little dab.

The change from warm and moist tropical air to the dry, frigid air over Wisconsin apparently began to break the magical spell of me having decent-looking hands.  I’ll never be the “after” hand model but at least while on the cruise in the tropics I didn’t have what Mr. Muse calls my “old lady hands” (or what Jeff calls my “hands of a fish wife”).  I took off a glove that I’d put on only a few minutes before in the airport and sighed as I saw how parched the skin appeared.  Just that morning it was looking somewhat youthful.

But, I laughed, restated my demand for “FOOD!” that I’d made on the ATL to MSN leg of the flight as the only thing I’d had to eat since Mr. Muse and I had fallen into exhausted slumber in the mid-evening at the hotel on Saturday, thus bypassing dinner, was a KIND bar and a Grande Peppermint Mocha, non-fat, no-whip from the FLL Starbucks.  Sadly, the baristas must have assumed that since I ordered “non-fat, no-whip” I must also have wanted “sugar free” because the first sip I took had me wrinkling my face in disgust and giving a shiver at the nastiness that is sugar-free anything.

Of course, I still drank it, because it was 5:30 AM EST and since I knew I wasn’t going to get any sleep on an overbooked flight (seriously, Delta, do you HAVE to overbook nearly every flight into and out of Atlanta?) that they were trying to fit eight bumped passengers from the ATL flight that left 20 minutes earlier – I was going to need the caffeine.

Wow.  I went off on a bit of a tangent right there…  Okay, reeling it back in.  Or, I can use the phrase I learned from new friends from the vacation, “Speaking of marriage…”  (There is a story there… you had to be there for it so you’re just going to have to trust me on this.)

Hangry.  It's what's for dinner.

Hangry. It’s what’s for dinner.

Food.  Yeah.  So, I was hungry.  Or ‘hangry’.  And tired.  That’s a dangerous combination and since I knew that we also had to stop at the grocery store to pick up some laundry soap and lunch supplies for the work week – going in hangry was a terrible idea.  Our first thought was the Hubbard Avenue Diner – and as soon as we walked in the door and found out that it was an hour long wait for a table of four (I didn’t ask about a table for two), we turned right back around and headed back to the Explorer to ponder our options.  Taking the lazy route, we headed to Chili’s by the mall, which has a handy-dandy touch screen at the table where I can find gluten free options.  I ordered a margarita (because we were still on vacation, dammit) and a water (which I drank before the margarita) and healthy choices which I fairly well inhaled.  Mr. Muse carb-loaded like usual and with the first actual, full meal in nearly 24 hours we headed off to the grocery store and then to home.

Oh, home.

In my head I envision that the beautiful people of the world arrive back at their homes to perfectly clean abodes, vases of flowers cheerfully greeting them as they walk into the door and they never have to worry about washing the dirty laundry that was artfully packed in their suitcases because they have people to do that for them.

My reality is that Mr. Muse wanted to pull up to the back of the house to schlep all the groceries and baggage inside so as to avoid a multiple-trip, back-and-forth on the narrow walk at the front of the house.  Fair enough, nobody wants to plow snow with a 43# suitcase.  The interior of the house looked as if our cats had exploded, tufts of hair lay all over the carpet, but at least there was only one puke stain on the arm of the chair.  The hard floors were in need of sweeping the debris from the barn, the cat hair and the dead box elder bugs.  While some of the house plants are flowering – mostly all of them were wilting and I can’t say I detected any cheer from them – it was more like “hey asshole, where can a plant get a drink around this joint”.

Mr. Muse set about dumping the laundry we’d crammed into the suitcases onto the kitchen floor and sorting it into piles as I tucked into washing the 12 dozen eggs the chickens laid while we were gone.  The carpet was vacuumed (as was the furniture).  The eggs were washed, sanitized and packed.  The laundry eventually was completed and the plants watered.

At one point, Mr. Muse, who had taken to relaxing on the couch, implored me to “just sit and relax” as I had an exhausting vacation and needed a break before heading into work today.  Two hours later I finally did.  That lasted 90 minutes before I was back up and doing stuff that needed doing, like more laundry.

Vacations are supposed to REcharge your batteries, right?


About The Amusing Muse

Deep thinker whose mind operates at warped speed. Philosopher pondering the big (and little) things in life. Storyteller. Office Ninja. Model. Teller of bad jokes. User of big words.
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6 Responses to The Monday After: Why Are Vacations So Exhausting?

  1. sassycoupleok says:

    Ahhhhh…..yes, it seems we come back to work on Mondays to rest up from our vacations or weekends!!! Hmmm……..the old song Monday Monday comes to mind…….enjoy ur day 🙂

  2. Home, sweet home…in about two more weeks.

  3. John says:

    I’ve never managed to get back from vacation without thinking that I need a weekend to relax. Heck, I’ll commonly schedule the Monday after a vacation away from the office, just to work myself back . . . I think a BIG part of it is the stress in traveling back.

    On the way out, I’m always a ball of rage & tension . . . then I get there, and I relax and all is good. Then, on the way back, I start quite relaxed . . . and slowly, but surely, end up with the same level of anxiety by the time I’m back home.

    And my hands actually split apart in the cold, dry air the other day. It looks like I stuck my right hand in a pit of overly playful kittens, with little cuts everywhere — and the only thing I can blame is the damn dry air. Dammit.

    Hangry? I know the concept. Well.

    • I think your assessment of stress/anxiety when traveling is apt. I tend to be really relaxed getting to the destination, but on the way back my mind is working on speculating just HOW MUCH work is going to be waiting for me. Poor Mr. Muse was home for two nights before jetting off to a work site (in your state even) today; he’s going to take all next weekend to relax.

      As for the dry skin – I went on vacation with lots of deep cracks in my fingertips – they all healed by the time we got back, but once again, my skin is like parchment – even after slathering on the coconut oil last night.

  4. Pingback: Fancy Coffee Friday: The Cruise – Recaptured. | musingsoftheamusingmuse

  5. Pingback: Fancy Coffee Friday: The Cruise – Recaptured. | musingsoftheamusingmuse

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