“I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving: To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it – but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.” Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
If I could write to Oliver Wendell Holmes, I would say something like, “Really? You’re very dramatic. How do you come up with this kind of stuff?”
Real life is different.
I’m flying to Rome tonight with my cousin Susie, and then from Rome we are flying to Florence tomorrow. Florence is one of my most favorite places in the world and I am so excited to be going back. I’m even more excited to be taking Susie along for her first time there. All the details to follow!
This morning I tried to eat the last remnants of food in my fridge. I had to go to the post office to stop my mail because I didn’t have time to do it yesterday. I had to bring the trash can back in because the truck never came this morning. I watered the plants, turned off the water, and attached the battery tender. (Yes, I know how to attach a battery tender. No, seriously, I do.)
I felt excited and confident. Everything was falling into place. Yesterday, I had made my reservation for an Uber driver to come to my house to take me to the train that would take me to Philadelphia airport. I made the reservation for 10:30 so that I could get to the train station in plenty of time for the 11:30 train from Warminster.
So at 10:25 I was outside my house with everything under control. But I couldn’t shake a weird feeling that something wasn’t right.
At 10:40 with no Uber driver in sight, I just knew something was wrong. I checked my email confirmation and the information was correct. And then I saw it. It said 10:30 PM, not AM. I almost fainted. I have lived many Seinfeld episodes in my life, but this was the ultimate. Do you remember when Jerry misses the marathon because of “the AM/PM thing”? I still can’t believe I made such a rookie mistake.
There was no way that I could order a new Uber car and make the train. So I remembered a driver that I befriended several trips ago and gave him a call. He answered. I said, “Bill, are you free? Can you drive me to the airport?” and he said, “I’ll leave the house in five minutes. Don’t worry. I’ll get you there.” And he did.
Bill arrived just in the nick of time to save me. He told me that the “AM/PM thing” happens. (I think he was just trying to make me feel better. This kind of mistake will haunt me for a while. I mean I write a travel blog, for Pete’s sake.) We even stopped at Wawa on the way down. As we got closer to the airport, there was an accident and 95 was a parking lot. Bill had his Waze on and we went the back way and we arrived just in time for me to get on my flight to Charlotte to meet up with Susie. We’re flying out tonight, hoping for first class.
And so finally, I would like to tell Oliver Wendell Holmes to stop giving this kind of advice. If you want to stay at home and watch Netflix for days on end, do it. Don’t put up the sail, DROP THE ANCHOR if you want to drop the anchor. Do whatever floats your boat.
Until next time, I’ll be up in the air.