Plan A: R&R
As of Monday morning, I was still gazing dreamily westward toward the garden isle of Kauai and anxiously awaiting my escape from Alcatraz, errr, Manhattan. Admittedly, I still hadn’t booked a place to stay in Hawaii and I didn’t have a rental car reserved, and if you know BAA, you know that’s either because I have a concussion or something else is going on. All I do really is plan and ponder details, and I always have my organizational binder (yes, even on vacation) in order before I arrive at my destination. The fact that I didn’t have everything neatly wrapped into a Hawaiian-print package should have indicated to me that something else was on the horizon… some other horizon.
Plan B: Vespas, Mozzarella & a Maybe Little Bit of Work
By Monday afternoon, I’d said ciao to Hawaii in favor of a once-in-a-lifetime high seas adventure in the Mediterranean. My colleague Celia works on the Royal Caribbean account here and she just happened to be leading a work trip at the same time I was scheduled to be out on vacation. By some beautiful miracle, I was approved to go on the trip with her to lend a hand if needed. We're talking Spain, France & Italy on Voyager of the Seas for just the cost of my flight and a little extra elbow grease during my time off. How do you say cha-ching in Italian?!
Faster than you could say “When in Rome” (which, incidentally I intend to say a LOT over the next few weeks,) I had re-deposited the 65,000 Delta SkyMiles I’d used for my JFK-LIH flight back into my account (fee: $100) and used them plus only 15,000 more (fee: $100) to book a roundtrip flight business class flight to Barcelona. That’s right! For the low, low price of 80,000 miles and $200, I chucked my idea of a relaxing trip with absolutely no planned activities right out Voyager's porthole. All my pipe dreams of solitude are now replaced with thoughts of wine tasting in Tuscany, exploring the ruins of Pompei and karaoking with 3,000 strangers onboard an activity-laden ship. I’ll get around to relaxing some other time – this is EUROPE!
Friday afternoon I fly to Amsterdam for a layover, then I meet up with Celia in Barcelona on Saturday. We say bon voyage on Sunday… stay tuned!