How did your summer vacation go? Or maybe you opted for a staycation instead. A friend recently shared with me about his summer vacation to Disneyland with family and ex-family scattered in different parts of the country. He said that social scientists in a European survey determined that most of the happiness from a vacation […]

How did your summer vacation go? Or maybe you opted for a staycation instead.
A friend recently shared with me about his summer vacation to Disneyland with family and ex-family scattered in different parts of the country.
He said that social scientists in a European survey determined that most of the happiness from a vacation comes in the actual planning for it. During the vacation, things may not always go as planned. For example, the car breaks down, there's a big brouhaha among fellow vacationers, or a hurricane (or some other adverse weather) rolls through vacationland, just to name a few possibilities.
Anyway, my friend said, perhaps the best thing would be to plan a vacation and then not take it.
That would save a lot of money.
On the other hand, you'll miss out on a lot of memories if you skip the vacation. We usually remember best those moments when things don't go exactly as planned. Like the slightly scary, sleepless night we spent outside in a tent at Colby High School this past June during Biking Across Kansas. Or the time we ended up riding our bicycles after dark, without a headlight, in the Czech Republic after taking a wrong turn on the return trip back to my relative's house. Riding down a switchback hill in the dark only added to the experience.
Often, life works the same way. We have our goals, but everything may not proceed exactly step-by-step as plotted out on our master plan. As John Lennon once sang, 'Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans.'
Nevertheless, keep on planning. If you don't plan your vacation or your life, at least to some degree, you'll probably discover a lot more of life happening than it would have otherwise.