For each of us, the holiday dynamics might be different, some of us work right through the year and have a short break, while others have the benefit of working from home.  I, on the other side, have a little of both.  Being in the Education Sector has given me a lump sum of holidays.  People often ask me if I even work? When they realise how often I get to be home.  The holidays are precisely special to me because I get to travel back to my home town.  Over the years this has become a tradition for me.  As I travel to my home town, I’m filled with joy and excitement to see my family and childhood friends.

As I want to make every moment memorable and to get the most out of my holiday experience, I usually go down via flight, so that I can skip the long road trip between Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth (almost 11 hours’ drive).  If your planning to go on holiday, it is better to ensure you get your bookings done early, not only does it save you the hassle but you could also get a lot of discounts if you book earlier.  If you are an adventurous person and enjoy long trips, a road trip to your holiday might not be a bad idea, especially if you with your loved ones or friends.  When packing makes sure to pack systematically and that you are aware of what your belongings consist out of, especially if you traveling nationally or internationally this will help you to be on the good side of border control but also for your security reasons.

The first thing I do when I disembark the flight, I warmly greet my family and shower them with gifts.  This I learned from my friend from Zimbabwe, who ones told me that it is good to always take something home, one must never go empty-handed when you visit friends or family, especially after it has been a long time.  It doesn’t have to be fancy gifts as long as you bring something, this gesture will show that you had them in your thoughts.  I usually bring different kinds of tea, noodles (from different countries), chocolates and biscuits. While we sit in the living room and they try their different treats, we would usually have this time to catch up on how everyone has been.  This is usually a very special time for me as we are all reunited and in one place, certainly the moment I cherish the most over the last couple of years.

Being home doesn’t mean I can finally just go into long napping modes and forget about life. No, there are usually a few chores I am responsible for. Firstly, I have to do all the driving as well as fix things around the house if there is anything that needs maintenance. I am also responsible to come up with ideas for possible holiday activities.  Although you might regard your holiday as your time to rest and rejuvenate, one must also see it as a time where you can help around at home. Extend in chores, serve your family members so that you can make their work lighter too so that they can also get time to breathe and rest. Your family might not say it, but the small things you do for them are highly appreciated.

After making sure I have spent a decent amount of time with my family, the next thing I do is to check in with my childhood friends.  It is always amazing to surprise them and to catch up on everything. I would usually go for lunch with them and appreciate the opportunity to see them face to face.  My friends usually ask many questions, and it’s only normal as they haven’t seen me for a long time. This is always the case for me.  They are always happy when I visit them, although it is only a short time, they usually appreciate the fact that I reach out and visit them.  Mostly this will be extended into a couple of days as there are many stories to catch up on.

Lastly, I try to include time to do some self-reflecting. This is the moment that I can reflect on the journey I had throughout the year. This time of reflection is usually the moments when I wake up late or when I’m driving alone.  It’s important to reflect so that you can see how you can come up with reproach and just try better next time. I often like to mix this time with having quality time, which is when I listen to music, watch an interesting documentary or simply just pulling off the road and enjoying the view of the beach.

Apart from visiting events or going out together as a family, these moments have become a tradition to me and have defined why I enjoy going on holidays because it gives me the time to be with my family.