Saturday, November 7, 2009

Australia Won But We're Not Going

As I said in yesterday's post, we're Disney Vacation Club Members. What this means is...well, we're supporting one of America's most giant and evil corporations.

It's fairly cool though. We bought a certain number of points, and with these points we can stay free on Disney property. No, it's not truly free. We put money down upfront, and we have to pay yearly dues. But this way saves us money versus paying for a hotel room. Plus, we get to stay in apartments with a full kitchen and laundry.

The problem is I'm annoyed with Disney for various reasons. And I'm a bit tired of it. I also feel going here on a yearly basis is too much. So, fortunately Disney Vacation Club offers alternatives. I don't really understand it yet, but apparently we can trade in our points and go to various resorts around the world.

The hard decision was....where do we go? I decided the three of us should vote, and we should do it the way Australia does their elections...preferential voting. I listed nine places (United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Elsewhere in Europe, Central America, South America, Africa, Asia, and....AUSTRALIA!). Then we numbered the places in order which we wanted to go.

I put Australia first, but I figured it would never win. Jack always talks about visiting other places, and Tim does too.

We voted.

Australia won! I was quite shocked. The reason it won is Jack put it second. I wasn't expecting that. He put United States first. I hadn't expected that either.

Tim put Australia pretty high up, but not as high as Jack and I put it. Tim looked a bit bothered that it won.

We talked it over and decided we're not going. I really want to. I have to admit that. But I feel we should take this opportunity to go somewhere else. I guess I feel guilty about so often getting what I want in terms of our travel plans.

The other thing is we have points for probably only one week there. I'm not doing that long and expensive flight for a one week trip. So we'd have to make it at least 2-3 weeks, and we'd have to find other lodging for the other weeks. That might get more expensive.

So in 2010 we're going somewhere that is not Australia. We THOUGHT Costa Rica had come in second, but then there had been a misunderstanding. When I had said United Kingdom, I had included Ireland in my mind. Tim did not. He gave a higher vote for elsewhere in Europe. I asked where in Europe he wanted to go. He said Ireland. So it then ended up being a toss up between Ireland and Costa Rica. None of us could decide, or wanted to admit, which we preferred. Finally, Tim spoke up and said he wanted to go to Ireland. I think, deep inside, I was hoping for that as well.

It's sad, though. A part of me is excited and happy. Another part of me thinks...But it's not Australia.

The good news is we're going in to Australia in 2011 or 2012....hopefully for a month again. We can try to make one of those weeks free for us. Well, at least lodging might be free.

I really don't know how this point exchange thing works. There might be nothing available in Ireland...or Costa Rica....or anywhere else. Maybe the only place we can go will be Australia. I definitely won't complain if that's the case.

The funny thing is....when we were in Kiama, we joked around that we were in Ireland. When and if we go to Ireland, we can pretend we're in Kiama.


  1. way to sacrifice! we're big on that, you know.. ;)

  2. Costa Rica would be good. I'd like to visit there.

  3. HappyOrganist: lol. I don't know if it was a sacrifice, or just the knowing that Australia probably won unfairly. Tim and Jack were probably scared I'd give them grief if they didn't vote highly for Australia.

    Michael: We might end up there, because I found out there's only one resort open to the Disney Vacation Club people in Ireland. The chance of us getting in there will probably be very small.

  4. Oh I'd love to go to Ireland! See Giants Causeway is a dream. My mothers' mother was Irish (may she rest in peace). Most Australians are related to a Kelly or Murphy somewhere.

    I haven't holiday'd since we've become a family of three - how does it fare? I always want to do a road trip and camp like my family did when I was a kid. I remember walking through a settler cottage and finding old bottles in the Gibbo Valley.

  5. Amy Michelle,

    You should come with us to Ireland! We can search for your ancestors. We have no Irish ancestry to search for. I'll have to borrow someone else's.

    I didn't know you had a child! How old is she/he? I guess the answer to your question would depend on that...

    We started traveling when Jack was about six months. I'd be so excited to go on vacation. But once we arrived, I'd feel depressed because I'd realize this was not going to be a vacation. There's no true holiday when you have a baby or toddler. Well, unless you're blessed with a nanny.

    I think by the time Jack was four, it started feeling like a REAL holiday. And now it definitely feels like one.

    So cool about the settler cottage. Did you get to keep the bottles?

  6. My mum kept the bottles, at the time I didn't realise how cool old things are. Now I obsess over old trinkets. I found a antique store in Kingaroy that had bottles like the ones we found that day and I had to force myself not to buy them. Once we get a house I'll decorate - not before. (We rent)

    Carter is my son, he's 17 months and completely nuts. We haven't had a chance to get away yet, I work full time now and the husband does a casual job. We're hoping to change that soon.

    Probably our first trip will be visiting family back in the USA. Just like you said about making a trip worth it to fly all that way to Australia, we also think that when leaving. One great option for us is a world ticket, I did this on my last trip and got to drop by London and visit my expat friends there. But when I think of long flights and a child I get shivers! And the other thing I think about is airport changes. Of course my US family live inland so it takes us about six flights to get there. How does one deal with flying international with children without a medicated relaxant?

    I remember before I had a baby I read about a couple that went to...umm... oh it's that Asian nation where they only let a few people in, looks like an amazing place to go to... Bhutan! with their baby and they talked about how lovely and relaxing it all was. Then I had a baby, and although he was awesome I don't know how travel can be included in plans. I don't know how you magic people do it!

  7. Amy Michelle,

    Jack was a bit of a crazy baby too! It seems some parents have it so their baby is a cute little doll that sleeps all the time.

    Before Jack was born, I imagined he'd stay in the bassinet all day and night. I'd just have to pick him, up every so often, to feed him and change his diaper.

    Well, if you are referring to us as magical people...

    We're definitely not one of them. We didn't do a long flight with Jack until he was six! Before that, it was 2-4 hour flights.

    I do see babies and toddlers on long flights, and I am amazed that parents are willing to do that.

    I figure for some it's almost a necessity. Like you, it would be about visiting family.

    My sister is taking their baby to Spain when he's a toddler. I understand that because my BIL has cousins and a grandmother there. But they're also going to Hawaii when the kid's a toddler. That's just for fun. And I'm thinking...Are you guys nuts?

    But they're really brave travel people. They've already taken the kid to Mexico. I'm sure he'll have flown around the world by the time he's three.

  8. Missyboo,

    Thanks! I hope so. I'm having a few second thoughts. I just looked at the weather. I didn't realize it was so cold there. I mean it's not freezing, but they don't seem to have warm months. It seems it's always a bit chilly. I like WARM places. Maybe I'll convince Tim and Jack to go to Costa Rica instead. Although it may not even be a choice. I'm having doubts we'll be able to get into the Irish place.