Today I had to confront one of the hideous realities of being an adult: forgoing a pleasurable experience.
To clarify, I received a call from one of my good college friends a few weeks ago with a very appealing invitation. His parents were letting him use their timeshare condo in Florida, and he and another one of our friends were hoping to find a time to gather and vacation together before the end of the year. (If you've read my previous entry, these are the two gentlemen who were in possession of the N64 and Diddy Kong Racing.)
My initial reaction was total excitement. I love my friends, and the prospect of seeing them made me a little giddy. They live in the far reaches of the country, so it's somewhat difficult to arrange meetings. In fact, the one (and only) time we had all been together since graduation was my brother's funeral three years ago. I was eager to hang out with them in a more relaxed and happy setting.
After this initial euphoria wore off, reality set in (as it is wont to do). First and foremost, I knew that school was starting in a couple of weeks and even though I go to once-a-week evening courses, missing a class (even when planned) can be very difficult and stressful. Fortunately, the new syllabi were released around that time, so I was able to go through the calendar of assignments and determine if there were any weeks that looked lighter on the workload.
My preliminary examinations produced two weeks that had possibility. I quickly emailed my friends and awaited their reply. The response finally came that one of the weeks I had chosen was actually the only week one of the guys could go as he was hoping to attend a class in Orlando during that week. Unfortunately, I also learned that his wife and two kids would not be able to join us. This meant that for the daytime hours that he was in class, my other friend and I would be on our own. Not the most ideal situation, but better than nothing.
I remained optimistic about our plans, but did not purchase any plane tickets as I wanted to wait until the first week of classes were complete so that I could know for sure that the schedules were concrete and that I wouldn't have to take major grade hit to be absent.
In the meantime, my other friend sent out a message to inform us that his time at the condo would be limited due to the fact that his work schedule would not allow him to arrive at the beginning of the week. In essence, it was starting to sound like we would actually only have two full days together.
At this point, my first doubts started to surface. My adult brain started to come up with the really lame but entirely logical reasons not to proceed.
1. Money. While the cost of the condo would be minimal, airfare would not. Neither would Disney park entrance fees.
2. School. Call me crazy, but I've never been the kind of kid or adult that likes to miss class. I hate feeling like I've missed something important and I REALLY hate having to make up work or take an outright grade deduction simply because I was absent.
3. Work. While I certainly have the vacation and personal time to cover a short vacation, I was not keen to use up all of my available time in one fell swoop. It also could create some headaches for my manager.
All of these items combined to create a cloud of sadness and doubt to replace my previous excitement. Combined with the realization that I would in fact not be spending a whole week with my friends due to schedule restrictions pushed me much closer to my final decision.
Sometimes I have to wonder, when did I become so boring and responsible? I mean, theoretically, I should be able to pull something like this off without too much trouble. I am not married, have no kids, no pets and I love to travel.
While I have a heavy heart at the thought of disappointing my friends, I think that I am most disappointed in myself. I had to send out the message this morning to say that I'm not going, and I hope that my friends will be nice and understand. I'm sure that in a week or two I will feel better about my decision, especially once I'm embroiled in my rigorous school schedule, but for now I am extremely bummed.
Sorry to write such a boring and depressing entry, but my days are not always filled with strange pictures and funny stories. I will try very hard to make my next entry much more entertaining, I promise. For now, think happy Disney and sunshine thoughts for me and my stupid responsible adult brain.