Last Friday I was so excited to travel home for the Easter holiday weekend with my sister, Shelly. By “home” I mean a nine-hour car ride to the small northern Idaho town up near the Canadian border where our mom lives. Shelly got off work early and we hit the rode around one in the afternoon.
The trip involves traveling over the Cascade Mountains of Washington, where the weather can sometimes be a little dicey this time of year. But we sailed over the steep, two-lane mountain pass and, aside from a few rain showers, enjoyed nearly perfect traveling weather. We talked and laughed the entire way. All was well. And a fun-filled, relaxing, weekend was looming, until…
Around ten that night, we pulled onto Mom’s long gravel driveway and my phone beeped alerting me to a text. The message from my husband read something like this: Hey, you left a small bag on the bed. Hope it’s not important.
|How can one little bag hold so much?|
A small bag? I felt the blood drain from my face as I realized what I’d done… Oh, my... Important?! My life was in that bag. My mind ran through the list of all of these “essentials”--toothbrush, contact solution, medicine, makeup, hair products… I suddenly felt naked and I kind of wanted to cry. And then I remembered... My glasses! It’s bad enough to forget just your glasses, right? I’ve done that before--once. I continued the mental run-through, which included the shoes and jewelry I planned to wear to my niece’s baby shower the next day. Yep, the weekend was a two-event extravaganza--a baby shower on Saturday and a big family Easter dinner on Sunday. Which reminded me--even my niece’s baby gift was in that bag.
I felt like I have in the past those few times when an airline has lost my suitcase--except after learning that lesson once, I ALWAYS travel with my glasses in my carry-on--and my medication, and my toothbrush, as well as some pj’s and an extra pair of underwear… Ugh. I could only wish I’d lost my suitcase…
Under normal circumstances this would just be your run of the mill hassle, but my mom lives in a very small town. The only place to buy replacement items is a grocery store. The nearest city of any significant size is an hour and a half away. It was ten o’clock at night. Of course, because of these geographical circumstances my mom always has some extra items on hand and she quickly alleviated some of my panic by setting me up with a toothbrush and some contact solution.
The next day, my sister graciously let me borrow her makeup. But…have you ever tried to use someone else’s makeup? Or hair products? All I could do was laugh as I styled my hair with my mom’s mousse. My hair hasn’t seen mousse since the early 90’s (probably from this very bottle.) I burned my arm--twice--with my niece’s fancy high-tech titanium curling iron. I went to the baby shower feeling like an 80’s pop star--wrong color foundation, eyeliner too thick, mascara clumpy, crackly curls in my hair… Needless to say, I was a little out of sorts.
But then, as I looked around at my mom’s beaming smile, my niece’s pregnant glow, my sister’s all-over happiness at the imminent arrival of her first grandchild, all mixed with the sound of giggling from my other two nieces along with the always-present joking and laughter that accompanies our family’s get-togethers I was struck with the thought…it could be worse. I could be in a foreign country, or attending a movie premiere, or at my own wedding! Yeah, I suddenly realized, I could do a baby shower and Easter dinner while resembling Cyndi Lauper circa 1985. So I did. And I loved every minute of it.
|Still had fun! Notice I'm in jeans because my fancy shoes were in my bag):|
Please tell me someone out there can relate? Anybody ever forget to pack something essential on a vacation like an important outfit or shoes, or an entire “small bag”?
Carol Ross's latest book, A CASE FOR FORGIVENESS, was released April 1st and is the second in her Seasons of Alaska series. Check out her Facebook page for some awesome giveaway opportunities going on now including signed copies and a $25 Amazon gift card! https://www.facebook.com/carolrossauthor
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