Welcome to the first post in a four week series from D.G. Kaye – Debby Gies. Originally posts in 2016, this post takes us through just the first day of travel on Debby and her husband’s winter vacation to Arizona for two glorious months. As you will see not plain sailing…although they were not on a boat, actually there was the limo first and then a plane, but that came with optional extras… Including germ distributing fellow passengers.
Travel Day -Day 1 Arizona Here I Come by D.G. Kaye
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 carry-on 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 and 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 carry-on bag, while my hub toted the other carry-on 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 4.30 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 6.30 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 7.45 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!
Thanks to Debby for her detailed itinerary and it does sound like the condo was worth the effort….
About D.G. Kaye
Debby Gies is a Canadian nonfiction/memoir author who writes under the pen name of D.G. Kaye. She was born, raised, and resides in Toronto, Canada. Kaye writes about her life experiences, matters of the heart and women’s issues.
D.G. writes to inspire others. Her writing encompasses stories taken from events she encountered in her own life, and she shares the lessons taken from them. Her sunny outlook on life developed from learning to overcome challenges in her life, and finding the upside from those situations, while practicing gratitude for all the positives.
When Kaye isn’t writing intimate memoirs, she brings her natural sense of humor into her other works. She loves to laugh and self- medicate with a daily dose of humor.
I love to tell stories that have lessons in them, and hope to empower others by sharing my own experiences. I write raw and honest about my own experiences, hoping through my writing, that others can relate and find that there is always a choice to move from a negative space, and look for the positive.
“Live Laugh Love . . . And Don’t Forget to Breathe!”
“For every kindness, there should be kindness in return. Wouldn’t that just make the world right?”
When I’m not writing, I’m reading or quite possibly looking after some mundane thing in life. It’s also possible I may be on a secret getaway trip, as that is my passion—traveling.
Debby has written a book about some of her travel adventures – Have Bags Will Travel
About the book
D.G. Kaye is back, and as she reflects on some of her more memorable vacations and travel snags, she finds herself constantly struggling to keep one step ahead of the ever-changing guidelines of the airlines–with her overweight luggage in tow. Her stories alert us to some of the pitfalls of being an obsessive shopper, especially when it comes time for D.G. to bring her treasures home, and remind us of the simpler days when traveling was a breeze.
In her quest to keep from tipping the scales, D.G. strives to devise new tricks to fit everything in her suitcases on each trip. Why is she consistently a target for Canada customs on her return journeys?
D.G.’s witty tales take us from airports, to travel escapades with best friends, to reflections on how time can change the places we hold dear in our hearts. Her memories will entertain and have you reminiscing about some of your own most treasured journeys–and perhaps make you contemplate revamping your packing strategies.
A recent review for Have Bags Will Travel
This amusing memoir by D.G. Kaye is all about the difficulties faced by a shopaholic whose idea of travel centers largely around shopping and getting all her fantastic purchases home without paying excess baggage costs. I could relate to this book really well because I am both of the things the author is; I am a germ fanatic and I love to shop. My shopping also comprises of bulky objects because I collect antique and vintage dolls and books. Have you ever tried to pack three teddy bears, two porcelain dolls, gifts for everyone you know and about twenty vintage books into your return suitcase without it being overweight? I have so I can relate to D.G. Kaye’s weakness for shoes and having to get them back home.
I really laughed at the descriptions of trying to make do with the tiny bathroom facilities on an overnight flight without touching anything. I recently bought my Aunt, who was travelling overnight to Dubai, a pair of soft slippers to wear on the aeroplane so that she would not get dirty socks.
D.G. Kaye has traveled to some interesting places, and it was entertaining to read about some of them and see them through the eyes of a shopper who is focusing mainly on what she can buy. Her reflections on Las Vegas, a city I have never visited, were particularly interesting.
Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Have-Bags-Will-Travel-Over-packer/dp/0992097495
Other books by D.G. Kaye
Read all the reviews and buy the books: http://www.amazon.com/author/dgkaye7
and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/D.G.-Kaye/e/B00HE028FO
More reviews and follow Debby on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/dgkaye
Connect to Debby Gies
About me: http://www.wiseintro.co/dgkaye7
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/@pokercubster (yes there’s a story)