"" Writer's Wanderings: We Have Arrived! Now What?

Friday, January 10, 2014

We Have Arrived! Now What?

Here you are at your destination. Time to begin--but where? Chances are, unless you drove to your destination, you have landed in a bus or train station or at an airport. The first thing to tackle is getting from there to the place you are staying. And if it is too early to check in, what will you do in the meantime?

Hopefully you have done all your planning before leaving home. With Google maps and other interactive locators, you can plot your path from here to there and figure out the best transportation arrangement. Taxi? Rental car? Bus? Train? Subway? It will reduce stress if you have a plan and work your plan. Public transportation in most big cities will have online schedules, maps, and even tickets or passes you can purchase ahead.

Most hotels and even B and Bs will allow you to leave your luggage with them if you arrive too early. Then you can start exploring. Just remember to keep those personal items with you like small electronics, medicines, passports, etc. Plan ahead for this and your backpack will be lighter. We often plan a bus tour (hop-on-hop-off) if it's available. We can relax from a long day of travel, stick our backpacks under our feet and get an idea of what we want to go back and explore a bit more. Sometimes you can get a good taxi tour for a decent rate.

When you plan your arrival day, leave some time to relax. Traveling is tiring--physically and mentally. Often you are also dealing with jet lag. We planned a little too much on a trip that started in Stresa, Italy, once. One the things on our itinerary was a trip in the funicular to the top of a mountain. There were no seats and everyone stood to see out the windows. Everything was fine on the way up but on the way down, the woman next to me screamed as she saw my husband start to collapse. He caught himself and laughed, assuring everyone he was okay. He'd literally fallen asleep on his feet.

I cannot stress enough the importance of carrying a bottle of water throughout your trip but even more importantly on that first day. You've been traveling for hours and no matter what mode of transportation, it can be dehydrating. Keeping your body replenished with H2O will help to keep you refreshed and healthy.

And, don't forget to let someone know you arrived. Facebook and/or Twitter
is not necessarily the best place to do that unless you have a great police department back home that keeps a good eye on your house and you've also installed a great security system. It's good to check in with someone from time to time especially if you are traveling alone. Smiling she says, "We like to check in with our kids so they know where their inheritance is being spent."

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