Several years ago Greg and I both noticed a poster on the DC metro system wall touting the sun and warmth of Key West and the Florida Keys. It was a perfectly timed ad campaign. We were suffering from cabin fever in the heart of a cold, gray mid-Atlantic winter. It wasn’t truly cabin fever, since we left home everyday for a commute into the city for our jobs, but we hadn’t been able to go anywhere else because of the wet, often ice- or snow-covered roads.
The image of blue skies and palm trees had its intended effect. Within 45 minutes I was sitting at my desk, looking out at a dreary world dreaming of warm breezes and sunshine. I dashed off a quick note to Susie, my magician of Key West lodging, at Key West Key, Inc. It was just nine in the morning!. Within a couple of hours, Susie found us a room for two with a balcony, mere blocks from the hustle and bustle of Duval Street.
I pinged Greg at work and told him to take Friday off. Monday was, after all, a holiday. For the “cost” of a single vacation day, we could spend four blissful days warming ourselves away from the predicted frigid rain due that weekend. I popped onto the internet, checked for flights and managed to book our round-trip tickets with our barely-enough points balance.
By noon Friday, we’d dropped our bags in our room and were sipping icy tropical beverages at one of our favorite haunts, First Flight Island Restaurant & Brewery, in the heart of Key West. It instantly cured our cabin fever.
Fast forward to now. Cabin fever in the desert hits in the summer. With high temps often hitting 110℉ or more, we spend most days inside, gazing longingly at the gorgeous blue sky, taking dips in the pool, and wishing for a break in the heat. We escape our home by taking quick trips to nearby restaurants, wine tasting rooms, and shops. It’s even too hot to drop the top on the convertible!
With the lack of a commute, there are no billboards or posters to entice me to pop off to a cool spot for a break, but I still have some ideas. In a couple of weeks we’re headed to Montana, Idaho and Wyoming to see Yellowstone National Park and the mountains and sights along the way. We’ve been warned to pack cold weather gear as it often snows in September. It’s hard to imagine a 60 degree drop in temperature, but I’m looking forward to making that dream come true, if only for a few days.
There’s a whole world out there just waiting to be explored. Sometimes a change in the weather is just what you need to shake off the doldrums!