It's my most favorite time of the year!! SURPRISE VACATION is here and it's time to put on your detective hats!
For those of you who are new here – let’s start at the beginning. Surprise vacation has been a longstanding Dalkin family tradition since we were kids. It started when I was 9, my sister was 6, and my parents would throw us birthday parties. Now that I’ve thrown a party or two, I know how much work they can be, PLUS add in some screaming and crying children, and it's an absolutely not for me // and clearly my parents. So my parents decided to do away with the birthday parties and instead they’d plan a surprise vacation for us each year.
So what’s a surprise vacation you ask?
IT’S A SURPRISE. And it’s basically the highlight of my life. I even like it more than my birthday/birth month which is really saying a lot. I’m obsessed. They plan a vacation for us and we get somewhere in the realm of 7-10 clues each year and we have to figure out where we are going. Some years we’ve figured it out, others we are totally surprised.
My sister sometimes figures it out, my husband has been known to do the same… but I’m always, without fail, 100% wrong. I think it’s because I just live for a surprise and love the whole build up.
ANYWAYS… since we were kids, we’ve been getting everyone involved. My tennis coach, friends of friends, parents, professors, you guys!! I mean, it’s basically a puzzle for anyone I know. So I’ll be sharing the clues here as they roll in (roughly one a week) and I’ll just continue to update this post so you don’t have to search high and low for the latest clues. Ready… Clue’s are officially rolling in:
LET'S SOLVE IT THIS YEAR!! Any guesses... comment below!
Clue #1: Lucky #13 - that is all you need.
Clue #2: Evanston, Winnetka, WIlmette, Highland Park and Glencoe - all together now.
Clue #3: LA at birth has the most of these on wood; though there are some nice ones where we are going.
Clue #4: JC Superstar - a US icon for a crazy life; kind of like Smuckers.
Clue #5: Yogi's picnic buddy rhyming, with than an old midwest gangsters group, with their recent song re-mixed
Clue #6: Termed like a young toddler dump; which then needs something to unlock the alphabet, to then begin...
Clue #7: Something that combines the beauty of Maine and eastern Washington; southern lands in the 1800's; first rhyming with a past crime.
AND NOW LETS GET INTO THE ANSWERS TO ALL THESE RIDDLES:
- Lucky #13, that’s all you need. Solution: Well, in their alphabet there are only 13 characters….. (Hawaiian characters)
- Evanston, Winnetka, WIlmette, Highland Park and Glencoe – all together now Solution: This is referred to as the “North Shore” - which a number of you guessed correctly. Turns out there are 18 areas of the world labeled the North Shore - 13 in the USA (One is on Oahu)
- LA at birth has the most of these on wood; though there are some nice ones where we are going. Solution: Great Clue - very proud of this one! It was for the sports buffs, but NOBODY got it. So, LA at birth stands for Lew Alcindor - aka Kareem Abdul Jabbar, who has the most points scored in basketball (which the court in the past has been referred to as on the “wood”). On the island of Oahu there are many Points worth visiting: Laie Point, Kahuku Point, Ka’ena Point….
- JC Superstar – a US icon for a crazy life; kind of like Smuckers. Solution: Not so easy here :), JC stands for James Campbell - with Campbell being a US (National) Icon for soup like Smuckers is to jam, crazy life - wild life. Am I sad you are mad at this one - not at bit!! James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge - also on Oahu
- Yogi’s picnic buddy rhyming, with than an old midwest gangsters group, with their recent song re-mixed. Solution: Simple - Yogi’s buddy is BooBoo - a rhyme is Lulu. An old midwestern gangster was Al Capone, and the band named “Capone” has a song from 2020 “Oh No”, if you re-mix the letters it is HoNo So together you have Hono and Lulu - Honolulu
- Termed like a young toddler dump; which then needs something to unlock the alphabet, to then begin… Solution: Easiest clue of the bunch! Young toddler dump - PooPoo, something to unlock is a Key, and the beginning of the alphabet is an A. Put it all together: Poopookeya - phonetically is Pupukea (a town on Oahu right near where we are staying)
- Something that combines the beauty of Maine and eastern Washington; southern lands in the 1800’s; first rhyming with a past crime. Solution: So I had to make the geography a bit off, but the concept is the same: Beauty of Maine - the state tree is the Pine tree, and Eastern Washington (anything east of Seattle is Eastern Washington to me :), is the primary Apple grower for the US. Southern lands in the 1800’s were - Plantations, and the first means “beginning with” a rhyme for a past crime: Stole - which rhymes with Dole. Dole Pineapple Plantation - which of course is on the island of Oahu!!!
So there you have it!!! Once again I hope I have tortured you relentlessly for the past few weeks, and although a number of you so correctly guessed Hawaii (and Oahu), I applaud you; but feel good that nobody got ALL the clues right. My skill at deception continues for now!!!!
May you all have a wonderful 2023!!!
Papa B, Doctor D, The Clue Master….or just Bruce!!!
Here are our surprise trips from the past... and chances are we can cross those off the list since I don't think we'd do a repeat. And if you want to read some clues from past trips - click the links below!
- 2020 + 2021 - skipped because of Covid + ya know, birthing a new baby
- 2019 - Patagonia
- 2017 - South Africa + Idaho for a ski week!
- 2016 - Arizona for a golf/spa week!
- 2015 - Costa Rica
- 2014 - Orcas Island + Vancouver + Whistler
- 2013 - Nat Geo Cruise through Alaska
- 2012 - Road Trip through France
- 2011 - Bahamas
- 2010 - Berlin, Prague, Budapest and Vienna
- 2009 - Banff, Canada
- 2008 - none of us can remember where we went this year! whoops 🙂
- 2007 - Italy
- 2006 - Turkey
- 2005 - Greece
- 2004 - England + Scotland
- 2003 - Cancun, Mexico
- 2002 - Hawaii (Big Island)
- 2001 - Napa / Sonoma
- 2000 - Los Angeles
- 1999 - New York
- 1998 - Washington DC
- 1997 - Las Vegas
- 1996 - Texas
- 1995 - Disney World