The limo was to pick us up at 630 am. I thought this would give us plenty of time to get through the travel ritual and rigamarole one has to endure to get where they’re going to via airplane these days.
After playing switcheroo for a few days, by adding, subtracting, and switching items in my 4 full-sized suitcases, and 3 severely overweight carryon bags, in efforts to get ready for the trip to Arizona, I was ready. I had been high dosing on homeopathic remedies for a few days to help heal my injured hip and gratefully I had regained more than half the ability back in ease of movement for travel day. Lord knows I needed mobility to lug the lot of bags through airports, customs, on and off carousels, and on and off a shuttle bus from Phoenix airport to the car rental building.
We waited for the limo driver to buzz us to inform us he’d arrived, and when the clock ticked 640 am, we began to worry they may have forgotten us, and we’d be getting into morning traffic to and at the airport being that we were flying on New Year’s Eve day. Hub decided to go down to the lobby and check, and sure enough, there he was sitting in the limo, apparently there for half an hour waiting for us. Thanks to our great ‘security’ at the gate of our building (NOT), the driver was told we were coming downstairs, only nobody told the gate such a thing, and so he waited patiently instead of buzzing up to confirm for himself.
I digress, this little incident reminded me of a conversation I had with the management office in my building when we first agreed to move there and I questioned them on the extent of security. Yes, there’s a security guard who opens the gate through the entrance when guests pull in – quite nice, but really irrelevant when they don’t ask where you’re going, or write down a licence and proceed to let anyone in. And yes, our building has a security guard at the desk in the lobby, who is rarely sitting there when anyone who comes to visit me makes their way up to my apartment door without having to buzz up for me to let them up. So when I was concerned about the underground parking and the safety, the management office told me it’s very safe. I pointed out that I didn’t see any cameras and she assured me that anyone would have to come through the security gate to get to the underground. That was not reassuring, so I said, “Ok, let me get this straight, the security at the gate entrance is supposed to make me feel safe? So after something happens to me and I’m left for dead it’s ok because they got a licence number?” How reassuring.”
Anyhoo, after getting to the airport and worrying about huge lines, which didn’t turn out to be too bad, but getting grilled by a grizzly US customs officer about the sandwich I brought to eat on the plane that was considered food that I didn’t check off on the customs form which gave me a choice to tick off of ‘are you bringing into the country … a multiple choice question of , from a farm, dairy, poultry, eg. ‘(there was no tick box for egg salad on a flaxseed wrap). He finally let me pass. Then we whizzed through security after undressing and redressing and proceeded to the gate. The plane was an hour delayed in leaving due to some mysterious unknown reason.
After getting settled in my seat on the aircraft, I once again began to feel as though I was contained in a metal can in a cess pool of germs. The plane was full, with at least 200 and some odd passengers and the heavy-set woman who whooped her cough didn’t let up for longer than 3 minute intervals with her hyena-like coughing fits. Where was she sitting? Need you really ask? Right behind me!
My hub and I rolled our eyes at one another and bitched back and forth how people who are sick were allowed to fly and spread their germs without at least wearing a mask. We huddled our heads into our jackets as long as we could endure, hoping to stave off her ominous germs. My hub became quite snarly by the time we’d had an hour of whooping woman. He turned to me and asked me how on earth is it possible that every time we travel, we get the sickos behind or beside us. I mean really, what are the bloody odds?
I’ve always been the 1% girl when it comes to the odds of something happening to someone. So once again, I replied to him, “We’re bound to win a lottery one day. Surely all the 1% situations we encounter can’t only be negative ones? We’re gearing up for a big win!
Four and a half hours later, we landed in sunny Phoenix, Arizona. The stunning view of the mountains from the airplane window was like winning a lottery for me. We deplaned and headed through the airport on a very long walk to the luggage carousel. By this time toting my heavy and large overstuffed purse and carryon bag, while my hub toted the other carryon and another overstuffed computer bag, we proceeded to the luggage carousel. We loaded a cart that could barely hold 7 pieces of luggage and proceeded to push that through baggage claim to the outside through a busy walkway to the shuttle bus we had to catch, which took us to the car rental.
Once again we off-lifted the bags to lift them back onto the shuttle, only to have to lift them off once again at the car rental. We were grateful for a man who generously offered to lift our bags back onto a cart. I’m sure he could see my hub was worn right out and I was walking with a slow limp. We had only to sign in for the car and load the bags into the car, which became a mathematical puzzle we managed to accomplish.
We were worn out and feeling pretty broken in the back department when we finally arrived at our rented accommodations and discovered our condo was on the second floor with 2 flights of winding cement stairs. We only had to lift those cases one more time; each of 4 bags weighing nearly 50lbs and the smaller ones at 30 lbs. We both held an end of each bag and with our last ounces of energy managed to get them all up to our floor.
We got inside and saw this beautiful condo we’d be living in for two months, which we could barely appreciate from our worn out state of exhaustion and realized it was already nearing 430 pm, New Year’s Eve, and had to run and buy groceries before the stores closed until Saturday. The last thing we felt like doing was go grocery shopping and carry more bags up those stairs, but we did.
We got back, dragging our asses and bags up a few trips from the carpark up the stairs and putting the groceries away, it was nearing 630 pm when my phone rang and it was our good friends Larry and Lois who live in Scottsdale, informing us that they’d be over to pick us up at 745 pm to go out for dinner.
This was the first New Year’s Eve I can remember ever getting ready to go out in 20 minutes. The food was great, the company was great. We got home by 11pm. I barely got my face washed and creamed, hit the mattress, never saw the ball drop at midnight, and couldn’t think of anything better I’d rather be doing at midnight than sleeping.
Stay tuned for more adventures as they happen!