Photo Courtesy of the Chart Group

I’m on vacation finally and it feels good. Of course when you have time off, you begin thinking of all of the things you can finally get done. Things you didn’t have time to do because you were working and still had to keep up with the cooking, the laundry and the cleaning.

Of course when you’re on vacation, you still have to do all of this, but you have that extra time. You make a resolution that this time, rather than surf the couch, crack a beer with lunch and generally just screw around, you’re really going to get things done. This year, it’s going to be different. You’re going to accomplish something!

Well, it’s the same with me. Not that I’ve done much screwing around in the last few years. In 2008, I went to work at the Cincinnati Zoo for three weeks. I have never worked so hard in my life with the exception of a three day trip I recall flying back in about 1988. It was the trip from hell. I had four flights the first day, five flights the second day, and six flights the third day. After that trip, they had to scrape us off the floor, we were so tired.

I repeated the exercise in 2009, returning to the zoo for another three weeks. Last year, in 2010, I flew to Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, Utah and helped out there, busying myself with cleaning bathrooms, parrot cages, shoveling horse manure and walking pigs. And then I have to fit that in with the flying, and the speaking engagements.

Photo courtesy of Su Gould

This year is going to be a little different. I’m going to do something far more sedate. I will be working my tail off, but I’ll be doing it sitting down. I’m going to take a writing sabbatical for two weeks in South Carolina and try and make some headway with some writing projects. You know, I have to admit that the one feature I really enjoy about writing is the fact that you’re pretty much limited to sitting down while you do it.

Photo Courtesy of Janet Hilton

So I have all of these projects I have to work on despite the fact that I should probably lying in a hammock somewhere sucking down a pina colada and reading something trashy. But to me, relaxation comes in the form of a change of work. To me, doing something different is relaxing. I mean, I’m still working and at the end of the day, I’m still exhausted, but I’m not bored. Working at the zoo in Cincinnati about killed me. But it was just so damned interesting. Does that make sense?

My work boots after three days working at the Cincinnati Zoo

So despite the time off, I’m not going to be doing a whole lot of goofing off. I have too much to write, too much to plan and I have a project I need to work on that is going to take some time and research. So, while my shoes aren’t going to look nearly as bad as my boots did after three days at the zoo, at the end of the day, I’ll probably be just as tired. I’ll still be posting here to give you updates on what’s happening.  I’ve been asked to do a “Chop Party” in Charleston, so you’ll be getting the lowdown and photos on that. In the meantime, I’d better get going with my day. I have laundry to do, birds to feed and a floor to wash. Again.

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