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My name is Scott and I like to travel. There I said it, wow that does feel better. There is probably a program for my affliction somewhere. I am what I would consider a Normal Guy. I am a native Arizonan, sometimes we are called “Zonies”. I am in my mid 40′s and enjoy a great life. I am self employed and have a wonderful daughter and Partner. Although I would say my life is a fairly normal one, I am also quite lucky in that I have the ability to travel and enjoy the world, I enjoy learning about other cultures and experiencing the world around us. I want to be right upfront about the type of travel I enjoy and the type I don’t. You will probably not ever read a story of about me backpacking my way through the serengeti during the height of summer, nor will you probably read any stories of me sleeping in the presidential suite of the Ritz Carlton in Paris. I am not a budget traveler, nor am I an uber luxury traveler, I fall somewhere in the middle, where most people fall I believe. I started this blog for the sole purpose of sharing my stories, my views and my excitement for traveling around this world with my friends, family. However it doesn’t stop there for me, I also wanted to make friends with others around the world, those who travel and those who dream of travel. Blogs and Websites evolve over time, mine will no doubt expand over time as well please come back and see what has taken place. However if you have come to my blog to schedule a flight or a hotel, this is not the place.

To Be Or Not To Be?

You thought I was going to go all Shakespeare on you didn’t you? No, that is not what this is about today.

To be or not to be, traveling with friends? That is the question.

We all know that this can be a land mine in waiting. Traveling with family is something we have all done, and many times you don’t have a choice. But you always have a choice when you travel with friends. I have to admit that I travel quite often with friends now that my daughter has grown and is on her own. When she was younger we took trips together when she was home for the summers, in fact one of my fondest is a trip to Europe for her graduation from High School. The one I will never forget is the one in which we lost her at the zoo (she was very young). Don’t worry we found her. And let me tell you this, the San Diego Zoo can go into lockdown mode in about 60 seconds, it’s very good to know if your a parent.

When traveling with family it is inevitable that you and your spouse will have an argument of some sort, where to eat, what to wear, where to go, what will the kids do, how much money are we spending, you know typical vacation disagreements we will call them. In the end, they are your spouse, children, parents or grandparents the odds of having a long lasting, relationship breaking battle are somewhat slim. That is unless you strap grandma to a rocking chair on top of the car, that might do it.

But what about traveling with your neighbors, co-workers or the dreaded girlfriend/boyfriend when you still don’t even brush your teeth in from of each other yet? With family your greatly invested in each other, with friends, your investment is less risky.  And how do you choose which friends to go with, should they be just like you in personality, or the complete opposite? Does the way they live their lives everyday give you any indication if your compatible travel partners? How well do you actually know them? How to deal with the restaurant bill? What type of trip, open and free wheeling or closed and controlled? How long should the trip be? With family you sort of just know how it works, but with friends, its like trying to find your way through a maze.


I have been lucky to have two very dear friends that have passed the trip test, I like to think that my Partner and I have also passed it on their end. But it hasn’t always been easy. Looking back over the many trips together, it’s clear that as couples we are allot alike. One half of the couple is pretty laid back and rarely gets upset over decisions or disagreements and is almost always up for anything. Then there’s the other half.  I am the other half that has a more controlling personality, the organizer, the guy who wants to ensure everyone participates, the guy who initially says no, or questions why, I have been affectionately (I think) called El Jefe, The Leader!

These are my personality traits, good or bad, I don’t expect they will change much. I have come to realize, when I have fought with friends during travel, and boy there have been some major battles, I’m talking fireworks, cannons, bring in the calvary type battles. Its easy to look back on our actions and no they were wrong, its nearly impossible to see them as wrong when they are right in front of you. Luckily for me, we have always found our way back to our friendship.

Over the last couple of years our travel has increased with our friends, what used to be one trip may now be three or four a year and some of them for weeks at a time. For me I have come to realize that the investment in my friendship with them is as equal to my investment in my family, they are family to me. All the good and bad, when we go home, I feel like we are going home with them. I believe this is how we have passed the trip test. I have traveled with other friends who have not passed the trip test, we didn’t fight or argue much at all. We just weren’t compatible for long periods of time. It’s no fault of any one person.

I have been asked many times why we travel with certain friends and not others. I have given this much consideration. I’m not sure it’s as simple as we just make plans and go. It’s as if there is a secret dance we have with each other, a deep understanding of who we are and who we want to be, a willingness to let it happen, an investment in our friendship that goes beyond the surface. I guess that is my trip test.

To Be or not to be, traveling with friends?

Maybe the real question is, How invested are you?

Happy Travels

http://www.travelwithscott.com

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