By Mel McConaghy
Why do vacations cause stress?
For our fiftieth wedding anniversary, and my seventy first birthday, our daughter gave us tickets for a coastal cruise. It was not the first cruise she’d sent us on. Three years previous, she sent us on a cruise to Alaska, which was great. The cruise she was sending us on this time was a five-day cruise that would begin in Los Angeles, and terminate in Vancouver.
We’d have to fly to L.A. to catch the ship, and then cruise to San Francisco for a day, then to Victoria, and finally back to Vancouver. When we received the tickets, there was still a little matter of our passports. Hoping that we’d get them in time, we waited as stress began to build. We also had people give us ‘advice’ about everything from the hassle we were going to get from airport security, to how to pack our luggage. Turns out, because of a few wackos, we had to pack our toothpaste, pills and hair spray in plastic zip lock bags, and put it in our carry-on, not in our suitcases. More stress.
Now, Barbara does not like to fly, and she does not like to be hassled, so the information overload was adding stress to what she had to pack for the five days we were going to be at sea. Five days without Barb’s closet would be a long time. When the time came, and we were finally ready to leave, she was pretty stressed out. And, when Barbara is stressed out, so is Mel. On our way, she asked, “What’ll happen if they lose our luggage with all my things in it?” I confidently said, “Oh, don’t worry Dear, Air Canada hardly ever loses luggage.” But, I have to admit that as I reassured her, I had my tongue placed firmly in my cheek and all my fingers crossed.
I don’t want you thinking that Barbara has always been a worrier, because she has not. When I met and married her, fifty years ago, she was an easy going, laid back and relaxed sort of person. However, living with me for fifty years ‘transformed’ her. My stress levels peaked when we arrived in Vancouver and hit the freeway. Once on it, I was reassured that Darwin’s Theory of Evolution was not entirely true, and my theory, that most of the drivers on the coast drive like they’re confused primates who were absent during the most important part of their mental development, was true.
I’d planned our adventure so that we’d stay at a hotel that night near the airport, catch a shuttle the next morning, and leave the car at the hotel. This way, we’d miss the morning traffic (preventing me from getting lost in it) and would not miss our flight, while keeping an eye on our luggage. Everything went along nicely, that is, until Mel tried to get clever. That’s when ‘Barb and Mel’s Wondrous Adventure’ began….
Go to Part 2
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 1
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 2
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 3
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 4
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 5
Barb And Mel’s Wondrous Adventure Part 6
My Life Through a Broken Windshield by Mel McConaghy
Mel McConaghy is a retired trucker and author from Prince George, British Columbia. Mel’s tales are his views of life “through a broken windshield”. They are entertaining and humorous in a folksy style.
Visit Mel’s website at www.melmcconaghy.com