Month: January 2015

Travel Tribulations

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Traveling is an adventure for a lot of people. I am no exception. Once in a while I travel with my husband when he takes a business trip. Our trips seem to continuously be memorable for one reason or another. For a trip last year, it was my luggage.

The trip was just an overnight to St. Louis. I packed one medium-size suitcase, one large shoulder bag, and a backpack. I also brought an oversized purse. My theory is “be prepared.” Actually, that’s not entirely true. I tend to be really indecisive and I like options. One never knows if the weather will abruptly change, or what event might come up while away. I’m a firm believer it is just better to pack a versatile wardrobe. For this same trip, my husband packed one duffle bag. That’s it. I cannot even fathom this way of traveling. We are so different. So, so different.

Two summers ago, we took a family vacation. Our memorable moment from that trip was the purchase of a new car after breaking down in the Arizona desert. This came to the forefront of my mind while in Florida this past weekend. I was supposed to pick my husband up from a convention in our rental car. I was a little nervous due to the traffic. It was horrendous. I had no idea Orlando was this packed with tourists so early in the year. Apparently for any Disney goer, it is one of the busiest seasons. Disney World was not on our list, nor any Disney park, but there was no avoiding the traffic. The convention center was too close to the parks and the one million people who decided to show up for Disney.

Before I could even pick up my husband, the first challenge was opening the car door. The keyless entry wasn’t working. The rental had one thousand miles on it. How could the battery in the key not work? I pressed a button and a key popped out of the side of the key holder thing. Super cool. I got in the car. Step one accomplished.

Next, all I had to do was push a button to start the car. Weird. I’ve been in other cars like this but had never started or driven them. I pushed the button while simultaneously pushing the brake. Nothing. I pushed the button again. Still nothing. I put my seatbelt on. I opened the door. I closed the door. I made sure the pretend key was near the starter button. None of this mattered. Now I was determined. I was also sweating profusely. (So much for my makeup and shower.) It was over 80 degrees and really humid. All the doors were closed, and obviously I couldn’t roll down the windows or turn on the air conditioner. This was not as bad as breaking down in the desert. I was not in the middle of nowhere with cactus and rattlesnakes. I was in a parking lot of a hotel for Pete’s sake!

After several failed attempts, I finally conceded and texted my husband. I felt he would doubt my automobile abilities, so I put it off as long as I could. Computers, cars, etc., have really never been my forte. I cannot argue this point with him. Yet, I do not feel bad about these inabilities at all. Some people are just better at other things, like packing responsibly.

At the suggestion of my husband, I finally asked someone from the hotel to help. The employee reassured me I was not the only one who has had to ask for help with a push button start. I felt a little better. Unfortunately, nothing worked for him. This actually made me feel even better. Blame would be placed elsewhere. Not on me. I called the rental company and tried everything I already tried while the representative was on the phone. Whatever. Two hours later, I was literally dripping sweat and my husband had taken a shuttle back to the hotel. I handed him the keys and told him he could take it from there. I was headed to the pool where there was at least a breeze.

As it turned out, the battery was dead. My husband had left the lights on overnight. Ha! It wasn’t my fault! Unfortunately, none of this really made me feel better. I just felt as though an entire afternoon of a very short trip was wasted…because it was. Luckily, things got a lot better, at least until we got to the airport. (More on that later.)

(Compliments of the Atchison Globe.)

Travel Tribulations

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