My daughter had her heart set on going on the annual Holley family cruise. So much so, that she had committed to paying for the trip and had begun making payments to the family trip coordinator, Aunt Charlette. I had heard about the family cruises and had been invited on a few, but the travel dates were never good for me.
I was elated to learn that my daughter had finally been able to accomplish something she’d wanted to do for a very long time. Now, just so you know, this was a weeklong trip to Haiti, Jamaica, and Mexico. My daughter had never traveled so far for so long without me, so I was terribly concerned about who would be the “stand in mom” during the trip. All of my aunts and uncles assured me that she was going to be in good hands.
The Holley family cruises are an annual event that most of the family looks forward to. It is a long-standing family tradition. This family spares no expense taking their children, grand children, nieces and nephews on this annual cruise to expose them to the world of travel. Seeing the Holley family on a cruise is a sight to see, because they don’t just show up – they TAKE OVER the ship.
It takes months of painstakingly difficult coordination and travel planning. Can you imagine planning a trip for 50 or more family members and most of them are children? This is a logistical challenge that my Aunt Charlette enjoys doing every year. She has this large-scale family travel-planning thing down to a science.
My daughter returned from her weeklong vacation telling me stories for days about her adventures. What I loved most is the memories that were built and the bonds that were created with our family members, whom prior to the trip she really had not spent very much time with. She got to know them better and they her. And ever since, they have all remained incredibly close. And that “stand in” mom, I was hoping for, oh, yeah, she found one – my aunt Trina. She played the role so well that my daughter was invited to be their “stand-in” daughter in their family picture! You see, aunt Trina has three sons, so for once, she could take a picture with a stand-in daughter and for that moment she had her family of six!
My daughter can’t wait for the next Holley family cruises. And neither can I.