Out of Office Reply

The boyfriend and I met an Italian while in Argentina. He was a lovely man who was very much up to speed with US politics, government and vacation days.

Whenever we meet people on our travels, and we confirm that yes, we don’t get six or eight weeks of vacation, the looks, the gasps and the sheer disbelief is embarrassing. I guess they think it’s not the truth, until they ask…only to find out that it is.

Our new Italian friend was clearly distraught by the lack of vacation time offered in the States. He told us that it’s our collective fault. By accepting two weeks of vacation, we, as Americans, have made it okay for companies to continue to offer only two weeks of vacation.

WHY are two weeks socially acceptable? That’s not enough time to recharge ones batteries…no matter where you decide to go…whether it’s across the ocean, or being a tourist in your own town.

When I worked in London, I had four weeks of vacation PLUS the week between Christmas and New Years — and I was only going to be working there for about five months! When I returned to the States and started a job with a company based in the UK, I was offered the same four weeks of vacation PLUS the week between Christmas and New Years.

I don’t know if our Italian friend thinks we should cause an uprising but I have to agree with him. I also have to assume that no one ever laid on their death bed and said, ‘damn I wish I spent more time in the office.’


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