Biggest Travel Regrets
Ah, the open road, wind in your hair, blue skies above and the radio cranking out your favorite songs. What could go wrong?
Answer One: Incorporating a move into a trip
We will always refer to this three-week road trip up the California coast as ‘Rolling Chaos.’ We put our home in Los Angeles up for sale during the housing crisis. The ‘experts’ told us it would sit on the market for 6-12 months. A little over two weeks later it sold, leaving us grateful but homeless. We couldn’t close on our new home in Santa Fe, New Mexico for six weeks. What to do? Take a road trip.
Into one little Toyota Echo (the two door kind) we squeezed two adults, two dogs, their crates, our clothes, computers, cameras, important paperwork, and a houseplant. For good measure we had to pick up our daughter from the airport in San Francisco.
Naturally, this all occurred over Christmas, so we rented a cottage in Napa Valley for the holiday. We cooked our Christmas dinner on this tiny stove, using items located at random from a convenience store – and the oven part didn’t work. Think fried ham slices cooked in orange juice. Yum!
Light me and die!
Lesson: Napa Valley convenience stores sell hard-to-find wines, and wine truly goes with everything. Trust us.
The perfect Napa escape
Answer Two: Listening to Construction Workers
It was getting late, and we were hungry and trying to locate our hotel near Niagara Falls. There’s much debate about blame (Driver vs. Navigator) but a wrong turn was made. We encountered a road crew and plenty of detour signs, which led us across a teeth-rattling dirt road. But we were rolling along – momentarily – until we heard Pffffttttt.
Lesson: A new set of four tires makes an excellent souvenir.
A bargain at just $625!
Answer Three: The Return Home
After a visit to Colorado we were making our way back to Santa Fe. It was a lovely day with beautiful scenery, and we were making great time… until… “Honey, I can’t make the gas pump work.” I probably rolled my eyes.
I put down the map and got out of the car. I put the nozzle in the tank and squeezed. Gas came shooting back at me, splattering on my feet. Interesting to say the least.
We backtracked to a Ford dealership, then to another dealership, followed by a rental car office, before finally heading home. Those were excellent stops by the way, offering attractions such as burnt coffee and credit card bills. I only wished I’d captured them all on film.
It took three weeks for Suburu to figure out the problem, replace the entire fuel system and return the car to us. Note: The car was two years old.
Lesson: Never buy a Subaru.
Don’t even think about driving me to Maine!
[Editor's Note: Yes, we still maintain that we are experts at road tripping.]
Now, it’s our turn to pass along the ‘tag’.