There is an old saying that ignorance is bliss, and I never really accepted it as being true. I like to know things. With the recent cold spell, though, I am starting to believe that ignorance can be bliss given the right set of circumstances. I don’t know if it is a function of being older, but I am way more averse to cold weather than in my youth. I don’t think I ever minded it as a kid, but that may be because I was ignorant of the fact that there is always someplace warm on this big blue marble if you know how to book a flight. My family never travelled. We didn’t do the family summer vacation to Yellowstone in a station wagon with no air conditioning, stopping along the way at rest stops to eat food mom had packed in a cooler. We never went skiing in the Rockies. We never went to the beach. We never knew what we were missing.
My first experience with travel happened when I was 24 and got married. That trip was a flight to Florida. I fell in love with travel — not the act of traveling, but the experience of seeing somewhere new. That trip was in October, though, and I didn’t discover the joy that is the beach until a few years later.
Who would have thought that a landlubber of a Midwestern girl would fall so truly, madly, deeply in love with the beach? Certainly not me, but I am a total devotee of warm, sunny beaches — which brings me to my point. I never knew to hate winter because I didn’t know what warm sand was, let alone that it existed in the middle of winter. None of the people I knew ever went to warmer climates in the winter.