Pre-Vacation Stress Disorder Syndrome

by Marinka on August 11, 2008

We are leaving for vacation on Sunday, so I am officially kicking off a week of anxiety fun that leads to the vacation. Every day this week, I will bedazzle you with stories about my worries, until one day I magically look up “bedazzle” in the dictionary and apologize for using the word incorrectly. Perhaps I will just dazzle you with these stories. Or better yet, in keeping with the truth in advertising principles–I will type them up on my blog.

The fun thing about my anxieties is that I’m afraid that writing them will both make them come true and also make them not come true, but will beget worse calamities. Like the Loch Ness Monster appearing out of the ocean and stealing my last beer. I don’t know how anyone can be expected to relax with that possibility out there.

But my first issue is housing at the vacation destination. Next weekend my family and I will go to a small island for a vacation where we rented a house and I expect to spend every night with Eyes Wide Open because the real estate agent’s assurance that “it is so safe here, no one bothers to lock the door” is just the kind of foreshadowing that’s in all the best slasher movies. Not that I’ve actually seen too many of those, either, because, you know, I want to be surprised when it’s my turn.

The first time the real estate agent lady told me that she never locks her door, I asked her for her exact address and she just laughed. The second time, I asked her if we did in fact lock our doors on the island, would it seem suspicious to the local criminals–like what, are these people too good for our island that they lock the doors? They probably have the Hope Diamond in there. Let’s go! For some strange reason, she didn’t laugh.

I know that this is my problem. I’ve lived in apartment buildings my whole life, and I am terrified of houses. There are too many points of entry for me to relax and to escape thinking about all sorts of blood curdling (and possibly flowing) possibilities. Houses make all sorts of noises and although I do not believe in ghosts, sometimes, in the middle of the night, I will make an exception.

My solution to this, of course, is to drink heavily. And to limit vacations to a few short weeks a year. Thank goodness that I don’t live in Europe, I don’t know how those poor people cope with their six week vacations. They must all have alcohol poisoning.

One year ago ...

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Kate August 11, 2008 at 5:45 am

I grew up in an apartment building and a townhouse in DC. While some people in my current DC suburb think that our townhouse is a “starter house” – I kind of prefer it to the single family homes. I feel safer with people on either side of me.

And I pretty much insisted that we get a home alarm system even though it would be next to impossible for burglars/rapists to break in without being spotted by one of our neighbors. I still lock the doors even when we’re home. An unlocked door while I’m sleeping? Unthinkable.


wfbdoglover August 11, 2008 at 7:03 am

Just curious. Do you close the door to the bathroom and lock it too? Even before kids?

My husband did and he locks the doors like crazy. I on the other hand never close the door unless company is over and last night I feel alseep with the front door open and the back door unlocked.

different hey?


ALF August 11, 2008 at 11:17 am

Growing up we never, ever locked any of the doors to our house. None of us even had a key.


Z August 11, 2008 at 3:38 pm

Hey! Are you vacationing in my hometown?!?! Because, yeah, no locked doors – houses, cars, hell even some stores after hours! where I grew up.

And now when I go home, I get paranoid. Tell my parents to lock the car, lock the door, close the windows! But… except for the axe murderer or two hiding out in the woods on the lam from the law (true!), no need. And so they don’t.

NYC vs. the boonies? VERY different. Good luck with the vacation!


Kristine August 11, 2008 at 3:46 pm

Our “vacations” are always stressful for me, but it’s because we generally have to deal with extended family during them. One day we will be able to take a real vacation and I’ll find something else to stress out over.


Insta-mom August 11, 2008 at 3:50 pm

I am in such a habit of locking doors that I have accidentally locked my husband in the garage, oh…well…who needs to count? I always know it’s going to be bad when the doorbell rings, I look out th peephole (because I ALWAYS look), and there he stands. Ooops.


Marinka August 11, 2008 at 4:44 pm

Kate–I totally understand and agree. Clearly, we are the rational ones in this.

WFB- I close the bathroom door, but don’t lock it. Actually, I don’t think that our bathroom door has a lock (I must obsess over this now!)

Alf- OMG! I assume that none of you slept growing up, right?

Z-Oh well, as long as it’s just a few axe murderers!

Kristine–Yes, that is a good point. Let me know if you ever run out of things to worry about and I’ll try to help!

Insta-mom–I’m laughing at the image of your husband ringing the doorbell after being locked out. Of course, the image is a little blurry, since I don’t know what he looks like, but still.


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