Tuesday, November 03, 2015


That stands for First World Problems, of which I am about to describe one.  Normally I would be secretive about this, but one of the advantages of having very few readers of this blog -- I don't look at stats, but I would be surprised if it was more than five people, routinely - is that I can admit to being a FWP holder.

Here's the problem components, in no specific order --

Neither I nor my wife like vacations that keep us away from home for more than about 15 days. 10 is better, but longer is okay if we don't have to change a lot. Because -

Neither of us like vacations of any length that require us to change lodging frequently, defined informally as two days out of three, three days out of five, that kind of thing. We go somewhere, we pretty much want to stay there.

I want to go to France to see people that I know in Lille, Paris, Burgundy, Toulouse, Villelaure, Aix-en-Provence, and Nice.  Thats seven locations. The first three are in the north and middle of France; the other four are in the south.

I want to go to Italy to see a person I know who lives in the north; also, to a town in the center which is the ancestral home of some of my wife's relatives; and to Rome.  Thats three locations. One in northern Italy (not too far from southern France), and two in central Italy.

So as a rough counting, its ten locations, which means that  if we changed locations every other day, that a total of 20 days.  But of course we would want to be in Paris and in Rome for more than one day each, and the same is true for a couple of other places.  Say, 4 or 5 days in Paris, and 3 or 4 days in Rome, and 2 or 3 in other places.  Thats about 28 days, which if you're keeping track is about twice as long as we like to be away from home. Plus, for half the trip, maybe a little more, its a series of show up/stay a day/leave.  Something like five places in a row.  Unpack/do the tourist thing/pack. Which in turn argues for a shorter trip.

We''re contemplating breaking it into two trips.  Keeps the length manageable.  Does nothing for the staccato stuff in the south of France, and adds a second round trip flight from the US.  Ugh.

We're contemplating renting an apartment in central France and staying in it for three weeks, with field trips, which kind of works -- but still, this is travel from the north of France to central Italy.  Short of having a Lear Jet at our disposal, there's a lot of travel time involved. We would spend as much time away from it as in it.  Plus, we'd still have to pay for hotels. AND the apartment.  Ugh.

I know, its a nice problem to have.  But it is a problem. A First World Problem.


RozWarren said...

Decades ago, my boyfriend and I rented an apartment in Paris for half a year and, with a First Class Eurail pass, used it as a base to travel throughout France and to a few more far flung destinations. It worked out very well, and living in an apartment in a residential neighborhood gives you a different experience than staying in hotels. We got to know our local stores and I swam in the local piscine every day.

Cerulean Bill said...

I would love to do that. Sometimes I think that the best solution would be for me to live there alone for an extended period, with my wife coming over for a month at some point. But unfortunately, each of us would miss the other terribly!