France Part 4: Couples Traveling Together

June 22, 2010 at 6:04 AM | Posted in Family Life, France, Relationships | 6 Comments

I have a big idea for couples who travel together on trips of 5 days or more. Now, my wife and I do not travel with other couples nor do we have any plans to begin. However, I have done a lot of over-hearing and I have a vivid imagination.

I propose that, weeks prior to the vacation, couples compile and then agree on a list of at least 25 topics to talk about throughout their trip. They then prioritize. So, for example, the first topic could be their children (how they just got into one of the 3 schools in the United States, Harvard, Yale or Princeton), the second topic might be their last vacation, the third might be cars, the fourth dogs. The order is up to the couples — who am I to judge?

Once one topic is covered to at least one of the couples satisfaction, they must move on to the next topic and that first topic, say children, must move to the back of the deck. Children can not be brought up again until all of the other 24 topics are covered.

My wife, upon my presentation of my big idea, wondered if it would work for just one couple. It is a valid question, the general concept being profound, but I am not suggesting it at this point. I think that this method, so new, could engender fights which puts the long-dreamt-of-vacation-bliss in jeopardy.

However, my plan can aid hotel hijinks because it provides a platform for one couple to agree amongst themselves as to how bad the other couple is behaving – how they are not following the rules. One can now agree whole-heartedly with their spouse, which is so hard to do in real life.


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  1. Great topic. I’ve done the couples vacation one time and it wildly exceeded my expectations. This is to say that it was not the worst vacation imaginable. In order to meet this admittedly low standard, the rules were simple. Two couples, two rental cars. My wife and I had breakfast with the other couple and dinner with them as well. At breakfast, we discussed what we were going to do for the day. For the other couple, it was a detailed minute by minute agenda of everything you could pack into a day. For my wife and I it was a vague mumble about ‘heading North’ or something of the sort. Tammy and I had a fabulous time making it up as we went along. At dinner we would talk about the day we had. The other couple (I’ll call them ‘Ted’ and ‘Chris’ because that is in fact their names) was sure that we were having an unfulfilling trip and suggested we do one afternoon their way. The only thing I remember was watching some guy blow glass for about an hour. Our ‘together time’ cured Ted and Chris of any notion that we should spend an entire day together. At the end of the trip, we all agreed that it was a great trip (and it was) and we each mentally noted that no one suggested we ever do it again. There were many, many times it could have veered toward disaster and at no time was there a chance something fabulous was going to happen. I consider it both a great memory and a bullet dodged.

    • Glass-blowing: I ‘ve been there! Great and funny note!

  2. Does Ingrid read your musings? This question also is profound.

    • Well, Ingrid is not a daily communicant but she has read a number of them and she liked, I think, the “Couples” one. The idea came to me while over-hearing the usual children bragging between two couple and I knew that they had just checked into the hotel.

  3. I happened to be doing a bit of work-related research in Google today and came upon this blog. I’ve clearly spent a bit of time here browsing and procrastinating! You have got some great observations here, so I will add you to my personal Google Reader for the future. Enjoy the week!

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