This Sabbatical ends soon, too soon.So I’m sitting in the sun one last time staring at the sea.The temptation calls to get all maudlin, and indeed, emotions do run amuck in these final days.But mostly, I’m ready.Not to go home, of course, but to accept the big pic and embrace the lessons of the last moments—and a successful 69-day Breakaway:
Don’t take it (returning to reality) too seriously.
Expect some big piles, bad days, and unwelcome ennui.
Don’t expect everyone (anyone?) to give a rip about my trip.
The money is gone; let it go.
Notice the blessings and beauty of home.
Re-engage in what’s good; avoid what’s not.
Reverse the not-so-good habits of the Sabbatical.
Send thanks and hellos to friends made along the way.
E-mail pictures, as promised.
Revisit the life plan, milieu, work, expectations.
Rewrite that stuff, literally, if appropriate.
Plan some smaller BreakAways; make vacations matter.
Understand the absurdity and hugeness of what just happened.
Simplify and throw out some stuff that wasn’t needed for all this time.
Find inspiration in the LifeHackers that are out there, everywhere.
Get back to work, but gradually; stay unplugged when possible.
Help the kids keep the memories now and for the long run.
Find ways to relive the experience.
Unwrap the artifacts.
Make a slide show.
Tell the stories.
Eat the foods and play the music.
Downshift to “island time” sometimes.
Find a way to bring the Caribbean into this life.
Close the eyes and visualize…
And perhaps most essential, start planning the next big BreakAway.