The one thing you absolutely need to do immediately after coming home from a road trip.
The trip is over and you’ve just spent your last night in a hotel. You’re on the drive home.
Once you do get home, unpack all the luggage in the front hallway, porch, or basement. Sort all the clothes into loads and get them laundered right away.
Leave the suitcases in the basement, or porch, and vacuum them every day for a couple of days. This acts as a quarantine of sorts, in case you picked up any bugs along the way.
Put the food away in the fridge. Wash the cooler liners out with a mild bleach solution and put the cooler bags with the luggage.
If you live in a condo, or apartment, notify your resident manager of your return. If you live in a house, give your neighbor a call to let them know you are back home.
Pick up the pet from the kennel, or grandma’s house. Get the mail from the post box. And call the utility companies so they can restart your services, if you put them on hold.
For the person that looked after your home while you were gone, buy them a really nice gift and have them over for tea. You can share some of your photos and stories, as you reward them with a gift for helping you out.
Finally, don’t forget to write, blog, or post photos of your trip. (I’m sure if you have kids, they did it all the way along.) But instead of posting everything, try and be selective, sharing only the highlights, or best 50 moments in photos.
Better yet, fire up your computer and make a slide show, or create vacation highlights with a movie app. It’s a great way to showcase your memories and make you want to do it all over again.
So now only one question remains. Where will you go next time?
Will you take in the BBQ festivals that you saw on TV? Explore old Route 66 and nostalgic America? Or sip along the Napa Valley on a winery tour?
Maybe there’s a monument or two that you want to see. To experience Mount Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty, Montezuma Castle, or gaze at the Lincoln Memorial.
Maybe it’s a natural wonder that beckons you. Something you’ve always wanted to see, like Old Faithful in Yellowstone Park, the highest peak of the Rocky Mountains, Berringer Meteor Crater, or the Grand Canyon in all its glory.
You could go hunting for kitschy landmarks. Go looking for the world’s largest everything. Explore the remains of old ghost towns. Or just go exploring and see what comes up along the way.
So you might be headed out for the weekend, or the annual two week vacation, or a six month journey. No matter what kind journey you take, I hope you have a safe and happy road trip.