Re: Road Trip...

Speaking of road trips, Semper Fi Wife....

My SpouseBUZZ colleagues will be surprised to see this post. That's because they thought I would be traveling and out of pocket most of the day today. Well, so did I. So did I....

I left the house this morning bound for an airport. I had my stuff together, let me tell you. I was fully packed yesterday, hours before I needed to be. Got up bright and early this morning. Had a little time to comb through the inbox, brew my tea (and enjoy it), take a luxurious shower, give Max the cat some love and even vacuum the downstairs. I hate rushing around on travel day. Travel is stressful enough without having to go through a last-minute crunch.

I was missing one thing, though - cash. But that was neither here nor there, there are a million ATM machines at the airport and I didn't need any cash along the way. All was well and I was ahead of schedule.

I recently PCS'd, so I live in an area I'm not completely familiar with yet. Furthermore, I would be flying out of an airport I've never used before. No worries, that's what Mapquest is for, and I had directions in hand. Life is good...All was going well until I got on a road and saw the big signs and the lanes that indicated I had just found myself on a toll road. A toll road + No cash = A big, fat "uh oh." No way to back up, no way to avoid getting the ticket for the toll fee. Panic.....

I don't believe these toll booths take debit or credit cards so I knew I was in trouble. I began looking in the car for change. Could I cobble together enough? What would they do to me if I can't pay? Wonder if they take checks? All of the the "what ifs" were running through my head and just when everything seemed so dark, a bright light appeared. It was in the form of a sign which read, "Gas and Food this exit." Yea! Well, of course an ATM machine would be there too, right? So, I could hop off, grab some fast cash and hop back on.

Not so fast. The exit was a toll exit, not a freebie as I thought. I nervously approached the toll booth with exactly $1.46 in hand (I've got to stop cleaning out the car). I tried to appear cool, calm and collected. The man looked at me and extended his hand as if I knew what I was supposed to pay. I asked him how much it was, and he replied, "seventy-five cents." I was so excited. I looked at him and said, "oh, that's great. I can pay that." He looked at me like I was a lunatic. Whatever.

So, off I proceed to find an ATM so I could get back on the toll road and continue to the airport. That's where the real trouble began. The exit took me on a one-way road into town, then on a detour through town and by the time I found an ATM machine, I was thoroughly confused.

My first instinct was to call my husband. I did, even though I knew he was unreachable. Next on the list was dear Dad, who went straight to the computer and read off directions for me. So, with cash in hand and directions, I was back on track, or so I thought. Apparently roads have been renamed around here and nobody bothered to tell Mapquest. I drove for miles looking for a particular highway with no luck. I finally decided that Dad must have given me the wrong number and I jumped on a highway with a different, yet similar, number. All the while looking at the clock and assuring myself I had plenty of time to make the flight. After several miles with no signage pointing me to the major highway that I knew would take me to the airport, which was still 90 miles away, I turned around once again. Called my dad once again, a bit more hysterical this time. The vicious cycle continued. Groundhog hour, not groundhog day. Finally, the clock had ticked out and there was no possible way I could make the flight.

I called the airline and was told I could *possibly* get on a flight this evening. Yeah, let me sit in an airport for hours, only to find I couldn't make the flight? No thanks.

Meanwhile, I was still lost. I had no idea where I was or how I had gotten there. Luckily, my sweet father directed me back home using Google maps this time, all the while assuring me that it happens "to the best of us." Yeah, right.... A grown woman who has traveled all over the place gets lost 30 miles from home. How pathetic is that?

So, here I sit. Back home. In front of my laptop. Flight left without me.

Let me give you some friendly advice. Next time you PCS, get out and explore the area, and by that, I mean get out of the immediate area. Know your surroundings. Basically, what I'm saying here is, "do as I say, not as I do."

My husband sure will be surprised when he comes home and finds a woman is in his house. And he thought he had the remote all to himself tonight. Bwahahahaha. Joke's on him.

I'm soooo getting a Garmin for Christmas.

What was that I said at the top about having "my stuff together?"

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