The one thing that I will miss the most is all the travel involved with racing. Of course, I can still do it but there are a lot of places that I would not go without a race. Here's a breakdown of places that I'd like to go. The yes/probably/maybe/doubtful/no indicates whether or not I'd go without a race:
Ocean City, Maryland- I spent a summer here and liked the area and there is a fast course here in April. I've raced on the Great Lakes, Pacific coast and Gulf coast but not the Atlantic in the USA. I suppose you could count Halifax, Nova Scotia though. One thing that I never did when I lived here was drive all the way up and down the Delmarva peninsula, which I would certainly do this time. It would be a nice trip but I likely would NOT do it without a race.
Dallas, Texas- I've raced in Austin and it was my crowning achievement but Austin is not culturally similar to the rest of Texas and I figure Dallas is my best choice for that. There are a lot of good options in the early Spring and late Fall here. In this case, YES, I would make the trip to see Bush-43's presidential library. I'm a Carter baby and I've seen the library of every president that has served in my lifetime except W's. That would make it worth the trip.
San Diego, California- I chose a good one for California with 13.1 LA but have wanted to race here as well. Dubbed America's Finest City, there are several options here but would likely choose a half here in mid-August where I could go from temps in the mid-90s with high humidity to sunny and 75. I've never been more than ankle deep in the Pacific but August in San Diego might be warm enough to swim. Maybe, I would go there without a race.
New England double- In October, there is a race in Connecticut on Saturday followed by another in Rhode Island on Sunday. Obviously, I am in no condition for that any time soon. I MIGHT go here anyway because I feel like I'm cheating on the 50 states project. I have very faint memories of being in Massachusetts but no memory of Connecticut and Rhode Island. I may have to go back to truly count those 2.
Anchorage, Alaska- The race to run here held near the summer solstice with nearly 24 hours of daylight and the average temps are usually around 60 here by early summer vs 90 in Birmingham. YES, I would go here regardless. I've been to 48 states already and I've got to finish now.
Hawaii- Same deal here but it will be awfully depressing to go here without a woman.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada- This is the only international city on my list that I would even consider visiting without a race. I'd probably fly into Spokane and make the scenic drive through British Columbia and expect the border crossing to go without a hitch. I hear the Canadian Rockies are really beautiful too.
Liverpool, England- I'd fly to London and take the train to run a RNR event here. I could also stop in Birmingham just for fun and cross the border into Scotland to get in touch with my roots. I am approximately 20% Scottish according to 23andme DNA. I'd probably enjoy this trip but traveling alone across the ocean just doesn't appeal to me.
Cape Town, South Africa- One of the most beautiful cities in the world and reportedly safe for tourists. It is home to the "most beautiful marathon" which encompasses the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. Hence, the name 2 Oceans. There's plenty to see and do aside from racing here but I definitely would not go here alone.
Jerusalem, Israel, Hong Kong and Sydney Australia fit the same category. All would be great trips but too depressing to visit alone.