austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

We'll travel round from town to town

And now, barely after my return home, Dad's gone off on vacation. He's got somewhat more than I have to take a vacation from, since he has actual if freelance work. In any case, he can work more or less by the schedule he likes (although there's more business in the summer), and he decided to take off a week and change in late March so he could visit with the elder of my little brothers out on the west coast of North America. And he'd very much like me to come along, as he mentioned every day, sometimes twice a day, before I went to my aunt and uncle's, and mentioned five times in the two days after I returned. I figure another ten times of saying I should have come along once he gets back and I should be past that.

But not having a job makes it hard for me to justify the expense of the plane tickets out and back, particularly when the itinerary is for going out camping and driving around. Visiting relatives near enough I only have to pay for gas, and making it a trip where I can cold-call at half a dozen universities (and would have hit a dozen had the weather cooperated) is different. Another is that I just don't think in terms of vacations -- on vacation, I'd spend my time reading and puttering around on the Internet while watching TV shows or movies I'd wanted to get around to, which is what I do when I'm not working anyway.

The planning was left mostly in my little brother's hands. Historically he's noted more for remarkable good luck than planning for his success, and the most recent plan that I heard subject to change, has them visiting quite a few National Parks and checking off, according to Dad, twelve of the ``Thousand Places To See Before You Die,'' although we don't know if my brother was thinking that way. They met in Las Vegas, where my brother spent up until two days before Dad left dithering over the right hotel room deal to get for the first (comfortable) night. The one they finally ended up with, I noticed, had a room price of $78.39, and a deposit of $77.39. Nobody could explain why my brother didn't deposit the extra dollar, but he leads a very strange life.

Trivia: Thomas Harriot's posthumous Artis Analytica Praxis (published 1631) introduced the symbols > and < for ``greater'' and ``less''. Source: A History of Mathematical Notations, Florian Cajori.

Currently Reading: The Later Middle Ages, 1272 - 1485, George Holmes.


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