I have so many apologies to make. My wife, my son, the kiosk ticketing agents I took a shot at yesterday. I still can’t come to grips with what has happened to us in the last 24 hours. The rush of emotions including guilt and shame combined with the overwhelming feeling of stupidity. Yesterday I made reference to being in my 50’s, feeling my mortality and emptying the bucket list. Today I have to swap that malarkey for “I just had a senior moment” and the unrelenting “am I loosing it introspections?”
I guess it’s now time to explain. Tuesday morning saw us early to rise, pull the drapes and peer across the runway at YVR to watch the early morning flights rolling towards the south runway and readying themselves for the off. We went to the lounge and had breakfast knowing all to well that we had 6 hours or so to right ourselves before departure. Deanna and I soon after jumped aboard the sky train and rode the rails like shopping hobos for two stops to get to McArthurglen Outlet mall.
We grabbed a few things for the trip and were back in the room by 11. We all showered and dressed and checked out with the concierge. We made our way down to the Air Canada check in gates by just before 12 with lots of time to spare. We scanned the first passport at the kiosk and the following popped up on the screen. Your flight is closed. I found the lovely attendant to inquire why we could not yet check in? She looked at me like someone looking at the biggest fool in the world should be looked at. I could see it in her eyes, but what followed was her very compassionate response. Sir, the flight has boarded and is rolling down the runway as we speak. “Excuse me? Did you just say the plane has left?”
She could have said duh but instead she took a tact similar to one you would take with and Alzheimer’s patient who has gone wandering. I appreciated her tone but now the shock was kicking in. I just made an epic blunder. I travel regularly. Planes, trains, busses and automobiles. I have never ever missed a flight. Come to think of it I have never missed a bus. How the hell did this happen. How am I two hours late thinking I was two hours early???
I cannot even begin to describe the complete look of disappointment and sadness that was on Allistair’s face. Four years of Japanese classes. Field trips to Buddhist Temples and tea ceremonies in Vancouver. In fact a month of studying nightly of his own volition to make sure his Japanese conversational skills were going to be up to snuff. He was and still is crushed. Deanna being Deanna came through big time in her ever optimistic way and convinced me after an hour of moping that when life gives you lemons you have to make lemonade.
Next came two and a half hours of dealing with the ticketing firm that I bought the heavily discounted fares from. Turns out they can help me if I wished to re-book with Air Canada for tomorrow’s flight. Just a little over $9000.00 and we get there. So that’s not happening. I paid $700.00 a piece for the ones I just flushed down the tubes. So now what? Do we pull the plug, grab our ball and go home? Or do we hit up the Google Flights page and start all over again knowing that a holiday might not be a bad thing.
A couple of things happened just then. I happened to change my gaze to the lounge TV. What I saw, read and heard seemed to indicate that North Korea, the Japanese by default and the President of the United States (POTUS) were seemingly embroiled in a show of political posturing and potential tragedy. If calmer heads don’t prevail, what could follow would have severely ruined our Japanese Vacation. Nobody wants to ask the hotel front desk staff where the nearest nuclear fall out centre is!
Secondly I realized that maybe two weeks of adventure by foot in Japan may not have been what the doctor ordered for this holiday. I think someone may have just done me a solid. So what’s it to be? Several options in the US, several options in parts of the world I have never considered before? I don’t do beach holidays. I have never been to a resort. I fly to Europe twice a year, rent a car and drive for two or three weeks in a state akin to a psychopath on methamphetamine . I see a thousand things in two weeks when a more realistic traveller would never put themselves or their family through that torment.
So here we sit on the deck of our ocean view room in Cozumel. I decided change is good. Cheap is good, and given the season slow is good. We found room at the Intercontinental Presidente Resort and if the P.R. Photos don’t lie and trip advisor tells the truth we are in for a great time.
Resort details with initial thoughts and weather update in tomorrow’s instalment.
Proof is in the pudding as they say.