Saturday, March 16, 2013

it ain't over 'til...

Last night, I was dead tired significantly before Ed. With the utmost effort I dragged myself upstairs just before midnight. Sleep, I needed sleep. But as I was pulling the quilt ever so comfortably up to my chin, I heard Ed dial out downstairs. A rapid phone conversation. Then another.
Ed? Is something wrong?
I'll come up in a minute.
Thoughts of sleep? Gone.
What happened??
Oh... I cancelled my Pakistani Airline flight. (If you've read the previous post, you'll know that he had just purchased a ticket for our vacation in June and I had purchased mine and all was well, even as we were traveling separately, on different airlines.)
Why?? Ed would never stay away from something just because it was mildly unsafe.
Well, looking at the Pakistani Airline record, I realized there is a strong probability that they may cancel flights, ground their fleet, do any number of things that would cause problems. If we're to meet up in Barcelona, I can't be one week late.
Was it easy to cancel?
No, but I explained to them that this is the law (in fact, maybe you don't know this, but we now have a legal right to cancel, free of charge, any reservation we make, within 24 hours) and that I would not pay their penalty fee. So then I had to call my credit card company to put a stop to the fee that they nonetheless tried to impose.

Bottom line: we are on square one, except not really, because I have my own purchased ticket to Barcelona on my beloved airlines. By myself. Ed continues to grumble that this year's fares are $100 more than last year's fares. Never mind. I can cancel my flight as well. And so we really are back on square one.

It is, I think, rather fascinating and disconcerting to realize that I have now spent most of my March posting lines on the topic of travel scheduling for the month of June.

We are up early today. Ed is anxious to get back to his inventions and mechanical manipulations and my mind is spinning about our travel plans and decisions.

But breakfast always puts me in the gentlest mindset...

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...and today is also a yoga morning and so by the time I come back to travel scheming at around noon, I am as chill as the day is cold.

I wont run you through the many, many, MANY stages of imagining a cheap way to get to Europe in June (and BTW, just to be totally bummed at the unfairness of it all, did you know that if you fly from Milan to Chicago round trip, you  are charged half the price of the flight from Chicago to Milan, round trip?). Suffice it to say that Ed's addiction to the Matrix website saved the day for us. There is one and only one way that you can cut the cost by 50% and it requires the exact combination of flights and some pretty unconventional stop overs, but we found it and we booked it. So we are set to go on what promises to be an exotically weird and I think perhaps beautiful set of travel adventures for that month. And we'll be traveling together. So that if one gets overwhelmed by the sheer complexity of what we've put in place, the other will steer the ship and carry us forth.

Our day ended in a good way. Ed suggested we go watch the UW women's team play volley ball at the Field House. We'd done that once, many many years back -- in those days when we didn't know each other well and I was taken aback then when I realized that he didn't really care if our home team won or lost, he just liked watching a good play.

Tonight, the Badger team was fabulously in control of the court. I don't know if you've ever attended a women's sport competition at your local college or university -- it doesn't draw crowds. Parents are the dominant demographic. At our game, people snacked on nachos with melted cheese and drank bottles of coke or water. It's all rather tame and endearing. Occasionally a dad will shout "Go Emily!" and you have to really wonder if Emily, playing for Loyola in Chicago, really wants her dad to be here, shouting "Go Emily" again and again for the world to hear.

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After, we went back to the Indian Restaurant just down the street and I smiled at the fact that for nearly eight years we never went to an Indian restaurant and now, in the last month alone we've chosen Indian food three times.

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So it was quite the day. And I want to pat myself on the back for steering clear of writing about the weather. Even though it was cold and it will remain cold here tomorrow and the next day and the next day and the day after that.

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