A week in my happy place, on the Amalfi Coast, where plans involve laying on my back under the Italin sun, and occasionally turning over to ensure an even tan, all broken up by numerous dips in the sea to cool me down. Sounds horrendous I know. It won’t be until I lay that beach towel down that I will truly relax. Until that moment, I will feel like a chicken with my head chopped off getting vacation ready!
Holiday prep aka getting vacation ready is exhausting business! I know I could just be ruthless, open my drawers, grab the first thing I see and throw it in a suitcase. But who am I kidding? That is never going to happen. The OCD in me would never stand for such a simple life. No. There must be lists, and chaos, and the completion of chores I’ve put off for the past six months, that now require essential attention before take off. Oh it’s fun to be!
Two nights ago I spent two hours trying on all my shorts, working out which were too big, too small, out of fashion and just right. The just-right pile went through more vigorous tests, where I tried on every potential vest and tshirt that might work with each pair. I have to confess, once these combos were sorted, they then got put through the ‘which shoes match’ process. I won’t even get into the online window shopping research, from boater hats to dresses, all I will say is the ASOS returns team must hate me. I must admit I’m a little fed up of standing in a post office queue uttering the words ‘I have an ASOS return’. I know, it’s all horrific. Honestly, I’m boring myself.
Yesterday I panic ran down to the pharmacy with my list: body moisturiser, face moisturiser, eye make up remover and conditioner. I mean, I have all these things at home, but the bottles and containers aren’t full, and God forbid I ran out of deodorant in Italy, cause the Italians have yet to discover deodorant right? Yes, I know it’s ludicrous. But I’m basically Goldilocks, and everything needs to be just right.
Now I could turn up in Italy unplucked, unwaxed, minus a mani/pedi and with skin so seethrough-white I’d forgive someone if they walked straight into me. But I’m not going to sugar coat this, I’m just saying it how it is. I am vain. Yes, vanity is important to me. But it’s controlled vanity! It’s the type that makes me feel good about myself as opposed to the ‘TOWIE/Geordie Shore’ definition. So I’ve had my nails done, I’ve stood in a booth naked and been sprayed the ‘medium’ tone at a tanning shop in Fulham, and basically prepped and primped myself so I feel good, and vacation ready. Except I completely forgot about yesterday’s eyebrow/lash tiny appointment, so some waterproof mascara will have to do!
Then there’s that really big part of a summer vacation on the beach. Squeezing into swimwear. This pretty much comes under the vanity section, but it’s important to me that I feel good about myself on the beach. I exercise year-round, but I try to give my all in the weeks leading up to my summer holiday, so I’ve dedicated myself to my Kayla Itsines killer workouts and I’ve eaten well, whilst still having a life. My body isn’t quite where I wanted it to be, but my bottom never will be, that thing refuses to respond to any kind of healthful lifestyle, but embraces donuts and ice cream like you wouldn’t believe. I’ve done what I can, and now all there’s left to rely on is a tan, and flattering camera angles. #beachbodyready #mybumisnot #cestlavie
What could possibly be left to do to get vacation ready? Anything involving electronics, that’s what. Charge my iPad, iPod, and ooo I haven’t updated my iPod playlist in ages, and even though there’s still 537 things on my to-do list and I’m yet to put my clothes in a bag, now would be a really good time to work on a Summer-2016 playlist. Even though I’m taking my laptop with me on vacation, and it contains every single song I own, it just won’t do to wait until I’m in Italy, the playlist must be sorted NOW. Once that’s done, it’s time to check all my camera memory cards for space, then get lost in the images of Las Vegas 2010, because awwww look at those photos and memories, I remember that restaurant, and that day at the hotel pool, and oooo was I thinner then? Let me check a few more photos to see. Sidetracked is an understatement. I then purchase a bunch of Kindle books of which I know I will read all of two chapters , before succumbing to an afternoon siesta in the sun. Last but most certainly not least, I’m the owner of a brand spanking new Canon camera, an early birthday gift from The Boy Next Door, a camera that doesn’t come with a manual, but has functions that are light years ahead of my current DSLR, and I’ve got one hour before we need to leave for the airport and I’ve just downloaded a 219 page PDF of instructions. F*ck.
We’ll be at the airport in a few hours. We’ll check in, go through security and then the new to-do list will appear. First stop WH Smith, three magazines, some chocolate (calories don’t count at the airport) a bottle of water for the plane and about £22.00 later, I will scoot through Accessorize for last minute vacation accessories, along the aisles of Duty Free, and through every other clothing store before sh*t we still need to get food from Pret and they’ve already announced our gate number.
Power walking to what is always the furthest away gate possible, passing those irritating travellers that have actually given themselves plenty of time to locate their gate (MOVE OUT OF MY WAY) I will try to hold on to my carry-on bag and numerous plastics bags of magazines and snacks, whilst wondering what the hell I’m gonna do if there’s the One Bag Only Onboard rule. Because there’s no way all
this crap these holiday essentials are going to fit in my hold-all. Yet at the same time I’m silently congratulating myself for all those gym workouts, I mean, I’m carrying 15kg of laptop, camera, magazines and whatnot with one hand whilst trying to make it look like it only weighs the allocated amount of 7kg, all whilst walking at the speed of an Olympian.
I’m a professional traveller! I’m also a maniac, but all this rushing, list making and holiday prep, means when I arrive on the Amalfi coast Crazy Annmaree turns into Chilled Annmaree and TBND could be excused for thinking he’s vacationing with the wrong girl. I’m fun on holiday, I’m relaxed, and I’m in no rush for anything. I also have a really great summer music play list and those first two chapters of my book are amazing before oooo that sun is hot and it’s making me feel kinda sleepy and zzzzzz…… I’m Vacation Ready.
PS I’ve just found out there’s a Zara store at the airport. If I skim 2 minutes of browsing at WH Smith and give up on Accessorise altogether, that will allow me approximately 4 minutes 30 seconds to scan the Zara aisles for any last minute essentials. Plenty of time. Like I say, I’m a professional traveller.