ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Politics of Making Travel Plans

Updated on April 26, 2020
Aly and Bab
Aly and Bab

People often ask me why I like to travel alone, and I tell them the truth: I often have different interests than those of my friends, and besides, I can talk to them any day, but when I travel, I have the opportunity to strike up one-on-one conversations with people from foreign lands. It’s more of a survivalist approach: when left to my own devices, to whom can I turn? Locals. And it turns out, they are as interested in me simply because I’m an American, as I in them because they are not. Beyond that, additional people change the dynamic, as people converse differently in groups than as individuals. And, admittedly, I like to be the center of attention; someone else will need to be accommodated.

Then there's the matter of deciding what do you do once you get there. Where do you spend your money and time? Are they not valuable to you and equally valuable to others? I’m not the kind that goes along with the crowd; I’m more apt to say, “Go on ahead without me, I’ll meet up with you later (maybe, but I really hope not).” And that is met with resistance. Suddenly, others feel obligated, not obliged, to hang around with me, and shortly thereafter, other people’s feelings start to sour.

None of this, however, compares to the predicament I find myself in right now. It always begins with the simple, seemingly innocuous question: “So, when do you want to go?” Let me give you some back story to my current sitch.

Last Spring I had a fortuitous opportunity to flee the country for a week. Torn between my favorite place in the world, Paris, and the land of my ancestry, Italy, I came up with a wonderful compromise. I Googled “the most French city in Italy,” or something to that sort. Being very southern Italian, Calabrese to be exact, The Google spit out a city that I certainly would not otherwise have considered, Turin. Turin? As in the Shroud of Turin? Aside from the shroud, the only thing I knew about Turin was that it had hosted the 2006 Winter Olympics. But the more I read up on Turin—it’s buildings are modeled on the Baroque and classical style of Versailles, it had been annexed by France for a little more than a decade until the fall of Napoleon in 1814, and it was Italy’s first capital and home to it’s royal family, the House of Savoy—the more of a natural fit it seemed. Booked! Right before I departed, my cousin called and chided me for not inviting her. I told her, “Sorry, but it was, like, a last minute thing, and I only had these specific days free. Hopefully, next year we can take a trip together.” Fast forward to today: that’s looking very unlikely at the moment.

We both grew up in California, but she now resides in Manhattan and I’m in Chicago. She calls me last week to ask if I’d like to go to California with her in mid-April, to which I replied“Maybe.” I should have known at that moment danger was lurking right around the corner. A few days later, I sent her a cryptic text: “No Cali. Think Italy.” So she called me the other day to discuss. “When were you thinking of going to Italy?” she asked. “Late May or the first week of June.” I like to break my year up into thirds: Spring in Europe for a week, Fall in New York week during the US Open, and California for the holidays. That’s how homey rolls.

“May? Really? May is too soon,” she said. (Too soon for whom? Certainly not me.) “I’ll be in Cali in the middle of April and I won’t be able to get time off that soon.” So I asked, “When were you thinking?” “September,” she replied.

Predictable. What was I thinking..?


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)