Stupid Me

Usually, when it’s time to return from a vacation, I’m overtaken by the feeling that, while I’ve been having fun, it’s time to go home.  So we come home, and I go back to work at least somewhat refreshed.

But not this time.

And it’s my own fault.

When I was booking out airplane tickets, I wasn’t sure how our plans were going to develop.  I knew we’d be starting in Barcelona, but I wasn’t sure what would happen afterwards.  When I booked the tickets to Barcelona, I noted that the return flight would start in Barcelona, change planes in Madrid, and come back to New York.

“Aha,” I thought.  “That gives me some flexibility.  If I want to, I can return from Madrid.”


I ended up paying an outlandish amount at the Madrid airport to be able to return today.  If I had known, I would have done something that seems to me even more outlandish: gotten up early this morning in Madrid, taken the train to Barcelona, and gotten on the plane to fly back to Madrid.

Moral of the story: when they say, ‘no changes without a penalty,’ they really mean it!

The episode reminded me of the unhappier aspects of my childhood: as I was one of the smartest kids in class, the other kids were always ready to make fun of me for any little mistake I’d make.  Haw-HAW!!

So now I’m back in the Big Wormy, having busted my vacation budget by my own stupidity, with piles of work to do, and it all needs to get done by the end of the month.  Not that I’ll have peace and quiet to get it done: there’s a whole Marx Brothers movie of stupid interruptions waiting in the wings.  And to top it off, the air conditioning in my office was not working when I left, and I sincerely doubt it will be working tomorrow.

Finally, the following item showed up in my e-mail:

LegalZoom Vacation Suggestion

What planet are these people on?

3 thoughts on “Stupid Me”

  1. “The land of forever-work.” Is that the place where you sleep with your Blackberry?

    Actually, I had a wonderful vacation. From the point of view of a tourist who sleeps in through the morning, everything seemed relentlessly normal. There were some demonstrations by civil servants protesting government cutbacks, but I read about them in the newspaper rather than encountering them personally. From a tourist viewpoint, the only thing that seems odd is that all the stores have big signs advertising sales that are going on for months, but have very few customers.

    When I’m on vacation, one of the things that I’m trying to rest from is the requirement to be at a certain place at a certain time. So I like to keep my plans flexible. This time I just got bitten on the bottom.

    And I acknowledge that this post was a brain fart. Returning home, I was in a foul mood, and needed to vent. And if I can’t vent on my own blog, where can I?

  2. What I fight while on vacation is the tendency to overschedule. Particularly when I travel with others, it is easy to turn a vacation into the Bataan Death March, where you are madly rushing from one thing to another. I told a friend of mine that when we went to London, he should pick a couple of must-see things, and we would work from that. this worked out very well. He wanted to stand astride the prime medidian in Greenwich, which we did.

    Often a bad ending taints the whole experience. I tend just to pay the bill and move on.

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