Friday, November 4, 2011

Back to basics?

I won't even pretend to be totally with it today. I am well and truly on my way to complete exhaustion. I'm stressed over stuff: I'm traveling next week and trying to wrap things up before I'm gone. (No worries, folks, the man of the house and his trusty sidekick will be here guarding the books.) I slipped on some ice yesterday before yoga -- and then went to yoga -- and now am really sore. I don't think it's anything major, but I really wish I could crawl in bed and sleep through today.

I have some review titles to catch up on, one of which is a travel-ish memoir by travel writer Jennifer Wilson, Running Away to Home: Our Family's Journey to Croatia in Search of Who We Are, Where We Came From, and What Really Matters. That's a mouthful.

Basically, Wilson and her family wanted more. They live their day to day lives with a feeling that something is missing and decide that moving to Croatia for a year might be just what the doctor ordered. Their decision coincides with the massive economic problems that began in '08, which makes it a pretty timely decision as well. Cost of living in Croatia, even for two technically unemployed (I believe Wilson continued writing pieces and worked on the book) people with two kids is much, much less expensive than US living.

Of course, the goal was also to learn more about their heritage. Wilson's ancestors traveled to the States from the tiny village of Mrkopalj, which is where their twenty-first century family relocates back to. There are interesting tidbits about Croatia's history, but mostly it's a year in the life of this family and their experiences.

I'm loving it. Wilson and her family acclimating to life in another country, making new friends, experiencing a different way of living. I wouldn't do it. It would be too hard for me to cut ties for even a year, but that's why I'm reading about someone else doing it. So even if I personally won't be making the sacrifices and changes Wilson family made in picking up and relocating to their ancestral country, I am inspired by their trip and the stories that they share in this book. It makes me long for a time when I could have talked to my own grandparents and learned more about my family.

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