Hello, my name is Roam About Mike and I have a terrible secret: I’m a recovering travel dipper.
It’s true. I had a problem with the dip and I’m currently repairing my reputation of committing an even worse travel transgression, the double travel dip.
Maybe you don’t like to double dip. Maybe you don’t dip at all. Maybe you have no idea what the hell I’m talking about.
Let me explain: the dip, succinctly put, is when you purposefully veer from the main travel course. You dip in, you roll around, you leave, back on course (unless you double dip). It’s like a side salad, if you will. The dip occurs most often for those mercurial minded folk, but is so much more fulfilling after the solid masonry of a well-planned vacation has been laid.
Most folks I know pick a vacation locale and stick to it, getting every detail finely tuned down the most expeditious routes to-and-from their hotel or various hot spots on Googlemaps, with nearby metro stations zeroed in, and train departure/arrival times meticulously ironed out down to the minute with optimized walking routes. Basically all the legwork for a stress-free vacation.
I do the aforementioned, to a fault, but then there’s that moment when you notice aloud, “Huh, according to this map here, Spain is only like an inch away from Lisbon. That’s so close…” and everything goes out the proverbial Fiat Panda’s window.
You start to rethink the vacation’s schedule—finger, hovering precariously above the last digit of the phone number to the rental car company, intent on adding an extra day to the hired contract just to dip into Spain to see a bull fight, or drink real Sangria, or Peenalope Cruth (Penelope Cruz).
Let’s say you’re stuck at the Toronto airport for a few hours on your way to Portugal and decide to cab it into the city for lunch and to get day drunk in Kensington Market.
Or maybe you veer off your cross country route and spend a night camping at Monument Valley, then, in the morning, decide to drive an hour to spend a few minutes at Four Corners National Park, laying spread eagle atop a quadripoint, body splayed simultaneously in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah.
Double Check. Rock solid dip.
Or your obsession of visiting every state in the US finds you peeing into Henry Lake in Idaho on a dip trip from Yellowstone just to leave some DNA and say, “I left a part of me in Idaho; I’ve been there!”
There’s a legitimate argument against the dip. Some will say it doesn’t mean you’ve actually BEEN to a location — the experience somehow discounted, policed by time spent within arbitrary borders.
Bullshit. The dip counts.
Tell me I didn’t soak up Toronto.
Tell me I wasn’t in four states at once. I was totally there and there and there and there, Man!
Tell me I didn’t pee in a state park in Idaho. ‘Cause I did! And I really hope the Idahoan state troopers don’t follow my blog and that the statute of limitations of admitted public urination has passed.
But don’t fret, friends; I’ve gotten help for the travel dip. I’m a stronger person now and have gone a long while without dipping.
I said no to the the milky white peaks of Greenland when I was in Iceland. And bade sexy Belize adieu when I was in Mexico. I said Wǒ bù zhème rènwéi, mèimei (I don’t think so, sister!) to China when whilst touring through Japan. And I resisted every sultry seduction whispered by Spain into the wind blowing gently across western Portugal. The wind cried travel dip… and I said Nay!
No longer do I stray from the main course in travel planning. I stick to the plan and am a one state/country kind of guy…for now.
Now, tell me if you’re a dipper, and if you are, of any great travel dip stories so I may live vicariously through you.