It all started with detailed plans to take a trip to the GrapeHound Festival in upstate New York. My trip-savvy daughter made the arrangements and planned to pick me up at the airport with her Greyhound and “my Greyhound” June.
We’d drive to an “adorable cabin” in a gorgeous National Park and spend the week-end taking the dogs to their doggie fair to eat doggy ice cream in kookie doggie hats while we drove from vineyard to vineyard on winding upstate roads. I imagined we’d meet East Coast dog owners and have exhilarating conversations.
I’d even packed the smoked oysters for cocktails under the stars.
Well, I’m sure the stars were out there somewhere behind the blasting torrential rain. Maddy was three hours late to the airport because June had stomach flu and needed to make umpteen stops. Our neighbors were not only NOT dog owners, but they drove Harley’s – lots of them – with Punisher written on the back of their matching leather jackets.
Night 1. Our new neighbors stayed up all night drinking while I clutched a can of bug spray as my first line of defense. The cabin stunk, the bed was bug ridden and I didn’t want to touch the sheets.
The gang turned out to be undercover cops. Their noise freaked out our dogs. One just toppled over.
Day 1. We spent the next day at the vet finding out the limp was more like a panic attack. There was no ice cream by the time we got to the “fair” and I’m allergic to wine.
Night 2 – More new neighbors move in on the other side of the cabin. THEY get so drunk one gets arrested and his motorcycle impounded.
Day 2. I awakened covered in bug bites. Dogs are fine, kid is fine, sun is out. I insist on ending the trip at Crystal’s Palace of Magic Fingers Massage ten blocks from the airport. After being slathered in Lavender oil, I took a shower which soaked my suitcase and drenched the clothes. All I had dry was brown palazzo pants, a yellow sweater and a blue tam.
Day 2 Scene at the airport – 4 hours to kill before the flight. A small girl with sparkle shoes sees me eating a stale tuna sandwich, mistakes me for a clown and tries to befriend me.
The flight is delayed – 4 more hours.
I end up trapped on the plane next to a religious gentleman who is saying prayers throughout the night. I am saying my own silent prayers -they are best left silent – and arrive home at 4:00 AM learning YET again, that flexibility is the best way to execute great plans.