Organising the logistics of a trip are stressful, worrisome and uncomfortable: both uncomfortable to plan and predict what will happen and, for me at least, physically uncomfortable once I get going.
After the usual anxiety that comes before any trip – have I got everything? Have I got too much? What do I actually need?! – and what I imagine will always be a slightly upsetting goodbye to my children, worries did ease as I got my lift to the airport. How I was planning on doing this leg was still a mystery and yet again, dad saved the day. But then I always knew he would.
Downside: arriving four hours before my flight. Cue some discomfort trying to last out a cup of tea in Nero for as long as possible. Then of course there’s security and no matter what I say, there is always an element of worry that they’ll confiscate my rock shoes or something, claiming they can’t possibly fit me and I must have stolen them.
Due to my desire to leave security checks for a bit longer, there were no seats and I stood waiting for the longest queue to file aboard our small plane. Just as I was starting to consider sitting on the floor, I needed to join said queue and proceed to shuffle along the floor with the dozens around me.
Once we land, the nerves will kick back in with worry about collecting my hire car a) in time before they close b) that they won’t accept my card as deposit or c) that I fart too much to sit on their car seats.
Get all that right and I’m still four hours from my bunkhouse. Oh and I can’t check in until tomorrow at some point. An uncomfortable night sleeping in the car on the desert in the middle of Spain sounded cheaper and reasonable enough. Now it’s near, I’m looking forward to it less and less.
The flip side of the centime
But you know what, this is all part of travelling. I haven’t done it much over the last three years (for obvious reasons) but this is all part of the pay off to see the world and have new experiences; totally worth it too.
The best stories are of when things went wrong or weren’t perfectly comfortable. The best experiences are the ones that challenge you and force you to think and work and figure out what the fuck to do next.
Yes, tonight is gonna be a stress fest and I’m not reveling sleeping on a hire car without dinner. But tomorrow at some point I’ll rock up in an historic village in the middle of Spain, meet up with my friend, look around me and say “shit the bed, am I actually here again?!”
I hope at least
UPDATE: the delay in my flight meant I arrived at Gold Car just to watch them close the shutter and the delightful gentleman there tell me, basically, I’m on my own. Stuck on Barcelona.
What has followed is an hour and a half of wandering, asking if people speak English and trying to find somewhere to stay tonight. Where Gold Car were gold level crap, the info service at the airport is outstanding, friendly and helpful.
So I’ve ended up in a taxi sharing the fee with a nice bloke who doesn’t speak English, on our way to a hostel somewhere in town that I don’t know in the slightest. Then in the morning, I’ll get a call from indigo Car Hire (also friendly and helpful) and try again.
It’s all a bit surreal but oddly very exciting and enjoyable! Certainly won’t forget this one in a hurry…