Last Minute Lulu

Daily Prompt: The Happy Wanderer
What’s your travel style? Are you itinerary and schedule driven, needing to have every step mapped out in advance or are you content to arrive without a plan and let happenstance be your guide?

I must confess that when it comes to traveling–the act of picking up and going to a place outside or beyond one’s local milieu–I am challenged. It starts with the excitement that often accompanies the rush of newness. That lasts for about 25 seconds. This joyous moment is then followed by a long period of prep, which some may judge as procrastination (I like to think of it as actively thinking about all the to-dos before completing any of them), which culminates in a flurry of mad dashing about, dotting of Is, crossing of Ts, and tying up of loose ends. Of course there’s the ever present cliffhanger: “will I make it to the plane on time?” The answer is many times yes and sometimes no.

I have missed my flight 2x. The first time was at the peak of flu season in December. I was quite ill, was all packed, and went to the airport to catch a late night flight. The attendant couldn’t find my name. I must have spelled it ten thousand times– slow, fast, drawn out–but no luck. Then I remembered I had the confirmation. Bingo! The attendant was able to find my flight which flew as scheduled on the previous day. Yep, missed my plane by a day.  The gods must have been so filled with holiday spirit that the Southwest attendance put me on the very next plan free of charge.

The second time was not truly my fault. My husband, daughter & I sauntered into Southwest which would take us to Los Angeles to catch a connecting international flight. Again, with the confidence of the truly ignorant we stumped our flight attendant who couldn’t find our reservation in the system. I’m not sure why she thought of it, but she managed to find the perfect explanation as to why we weren’t coming up. We were in the system, our flight had been booked, but we had overlooked a tiny detail as to place. We were in Oakland, but the flight was taking off from the SF Airport! Oh, the devil is in the details.

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