Tracking My Travel
While I don't consider myself OCD I do enjoy keeping track of repetitive actions.
According to SWARM, I've taken the time to check-in to 809 Airports, 166 Gyms, and 744 Hotels. I have a streak of 74 consecutive weeks of spending at least one night in a hotel.
On UNTAPPD I have drunk 1181 unique beers.
Year-to-date TripIt shows me staying 219 nights in hotel rooms.
OCD - obsessive-compulsive disorder : an anxiety disorder characterized by recurrent obsessions or compulsions or both that cause significant distress, are time-consuming or interfere with normal daily functioning, and are recognized by the individual affected as excessive or unreasonable —abbreviation OCD
Like I said I don't consider myself OCD.......
Normally as each year wraps up I spend a bit of time looking back at all the places I've traveled to and the experience and lessons they've provided.
When I first started traveling I proudly hung my "brag tags" off my laptop bag. Brag tags are the membership cards that the airlines, hotel, and rental car companies send you as climb their loyalty ladder. After a few years of hardcore traveling, you'll hit top-tier with all of them and brag tags lose their luster. Plus, you start to look like a rube with all that plastic hanging off your laptop bag.
There are many ways to document travels and adventures. Some choose to journal, I love putting pen to paper, and that's too time-consuming for me. Others bring back shot glasses from their destinations. Not a fan, since a wall full of shot glasses, would require a lot of dusting and organizing. Like I said I don't consider myself OCD.......
Others, I included, take pictures, a lot of pictures. In this digital age, it’s easy to share our travels, real-time. There’s SnapChat, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google Drive and on and on and on. For years we carried a DSLR camera and various lens on our trips. Once home, I'd pull out the SD card and migrate the pictures to the appropriate folder Destination_Year_Month (Buffalo NY_2019_July) on an external drive. Like I said I don't consider myself OCD.......
In 2019 cellphone camera technology and the available applications are more than enough for our photo needs, so that's what we're using. Besides not hauling around and worrying about a camera bag is kind of nice.
So how do I track my travel?
Over the years, and quite by accident, we've amassed a huge collection of holiday ornaments from our travels, and here's why. First, typically they're small, lightweight and easy to pack. Second, we frequent local stores over the major ones when we travel, and they tend to have geographically relevant items. Besides, I live in Orlando and we have 6 malls all within a 40-minute drive, so I have all the major shopping destinations I need.
About six years ago, while decorating for the holidays, we started commenting on the ornaments as we pulled them out of their appropriately labeled totes. Like I said I don't consider myself OCD....... It was then we realized we'd been tracking our travels. Yearly, we get the chance to revisit each destination as we "discuss" where each ornament will best be displayed on the tree. Like I said I don't consider myself OCD.......
This year our big trip was to Niagara Falls, where we spent 5 days going back and forth between Canada and the United States. While in Sanborn, NY we found ourselves at the Lewiston Antique Mall where we came across this beautifully crafted stained glass piece that accurately depicted our trip on the Maid Of The Mist. Here's a tip if you plan to visit Niagara Falls stay on the Canadian side, a better view of the falls and more to do on that side of the river.
In 2018 we did a true road trip through Virginia. We flew into Richmond on Saturday and had a return trip booked for the following Tuesday, that was it... no real plans. Like I said I don't consider myself OCD....... We spent time at Blenheim Vineyards, which is co-owned by Dave Matthews and drove through Shenandoah National Park. By Monday we found ourselves in the Historic Triangle, Williamsburg, Yorktown & Jamestown VA. The Glasshouse in Jamestown, VA was special, as I vividly remember visiting there with my parents in 1972. I'm sure the Glasshouse has changed with time, but it was exactly as I remembered.
In 2013, one of the kids turned 21. For their birthday, they wished to have a drink in each country as they traveled around the world. Being the world's most accommodating parents, we granted that wish by taking them to Epcot during their annual Food & Wine Festival, we barely made it out of Germany before they tapped out on their adventure.
Our ornament from the Grand Ole Opry reminds us that we saw Garth Brooks induct Chris Janson into the Opry. Each year, as we hang our Charleston, SC palmetto tree ornament my wife recalls how cold she was standing on the deck of the USS Yorktown. The New Orleans Bourbon Street piece leads us into a conversation of wonderful food and street corner jazz musicians. The tree lights seem to always reflect off our Biltmore House ornament. Rightfully so since our visit here was one of the bright spots of 2014. Between the wine tastings and strolls through the Biltmore Village we came close selling the house and moving this direction.
There is one last brag tag that I still carry on my Everki Atlas. It's from the first date that my wife and I went on....... from the Mouse House. Oh yeah, like I said I don't consider myself OCD.......