Friday, November 16, 2012

Speed bumps

Okay. I know everyone encounters bumps on the road of life. Maybe it's just me, but my road seems to suddenly add a few extra bumps whenever I am going to a workshop at the Barn. The two weeks before the trip started most inauspicously. Are the gods telling me something?

Half a week before the trip, my cell phone died suddenly and inexplicably. It was only 2.5 years old. So I replaced it with a different model.

I started the trip with a visit to a good friend near Detroit. After deplaning my new cell phone malfunctioned and then totally quit. Not even a week old.

Thanks to push button technology, who memorizes phone numbers anymore? I panicked before remembering my printed itinerary with phone numbers. And the airport had pay phones. Old fashion technology saved the day. The area's T-mobile store graciously replaced the phone.

A week later, passing through Chicago airport on the way to the Barn, Southwest Airlines lost my luggage. Not the suitcase full of personal stuff but the big duffel bag with quilts and most workshop supplies. Chicago airport is notorious for losing luggage.

Once again, the printed itinerary came in handy: Southwest wanted an address and phone number for delivery - should the duffel be found. It was still missing Monday morning. Southwest's standard reply: they're actively looking for it.

Due to the generosity of the other workshop participants - special thanks to Meredith - I was able to work on the first exercise. All whilst imagining the worst about my missing luggage. If it's really lost, I would be out many many hours of work. Enough to make any grown woman cry.

Then early afternoon I got a message: duffel found and on its way to Columbus. Who knows where it had been. I was just immensely relieved when Bill Morgan delivered it to the Barn before dinner.

For the return trip home, I split up my precious cargo. I would've done that even if I weren't going through Chicago. Lesson learned: halve the valuables, halve the worries, halve the loss.

Those were the medium bumps.

Partly because I'm an unseasoned traveller, partly because I'm a techno-dolt - I encountered a few small bumps too. My cell phone wasn't usable at all in Toronto even though I got a message about roaming charges when I first crossed the border. My iPad got no AT&T cellular data service in Canada nor at the Barn. Service was sketchy the whole trip. I managed anyway without these tech toys. And credit card charges in Canada were denied until I called them - at least they're looking out for me.

Next time I'll tell you about the big bump that occurred a couple weeks before the trip and resonated afterwards.


  1. I know and feel your pain as far as airline travel is concerned. My family no longer wants to travel with me as they always cancel my flights or lose my luggage :).

    1. It was the first time for lost luggage. Hopefully the last. Wouldn't want to be ostracized by family and friends for something beyond my control. That would really hurt!

  2. So you are the bad luck charm! Remember when we stayed together at Shaw's Inn and my luggage had been "mishandled"? Did you manage to create some beautiful work anyway? Can't wait to see it.

    1. I remember that well and thought of you many times. I'm working on the pieces started during the workshop. Stay tuned!