Travel bug / by vanessa

Today I am less plaguey than yesterday.  It is still the plague and plagues suck. But I digress. A few years ago, my job sent me to the East Coast for work every week. I had a corporate apartment in Hoboken, which I euphemized  as The City to anyone not from New York.

As a consultant, travel rules generally go like this: you can expense airfare to and from your client site (in this case, LAX to JFK and back) or you can expense a ticket of equal amount to fly elsewhere on a return trip. This meant that I spent probably a total of ten weekends in my apartment in LA over an eighteen-month period. It's the reason my roommate and I broke up. Sadface. But, I was able to do one of the things makes my Sagittarian heart leap: travel.

My coworkers, BA and BS and I, decided that we would fly to Iceland for a weekend. Reykjavik is only a four and a half hour flight from New York, making it faster than flying home. Coincidentally, my roommate was working in London for two weeks, and she agreed to meet us there. After work on Thursday, we headed straight to the airport. We stopped at the bar on our way to the gate. By the time they announced boarding, we were two celebratory scotches deep.

We got on the plane and BA immediately popped a sleeping aid. Normally I'd have too, but I didn't want to overshoot on a short flight. We waited on the tarmac for about twenty minutes. Finally we taxied from the gate. We didn't get far. The pilot--utterly charming in his honesty--announced that there was a "critical failure" and we'd have to return to the gate to look for a part. Like, a part? Just one? By critical, how critical? So we returned. They deplaned us as they looked for the part. We got another drink. I highly recommend having a conversation with a friend who's on Ambien and scotch.

Eventually we learned that they cancelled the flight until the following day. We didn't want to wait, so the three of us tried to book another city. BS and I tried to sell BA on the Bahamas instead. But BA found the freezing cold of DC more inviting, so BS and I headed to London to hangout with my roommate.

An ill-fated Reykjavik trip turned into an even greater ill-fated London trip for reasons that are another story altogether. More importantly, three and a half years later, I have finally booked a trip back to Iceland. This time I'll be foregoing the bars and instead yelping parks. It's marginally less glamorous. My son is turning two in August, and we wanted to take advantage of seat-sharing before we have to start paying out the nose for his own ticket. By the time we return from this trip, in his two years he will have visited six countries outside of the US, eleven states, plus the capital.

As a parent, I try to be conscious about letting my little guy develop his own interests. But I can't help but hope that he, too, gains a sense of wanderlust and appreciation for foreign soil, be it city, state or country. And if he ends up finding joy shopping in a place where he'll be able to buy clothes not found at home? Well that's a bonus.