Bad vacation luck.

“Sorry folks, moose outside should have told you. Park’s closed.”

We have the worst vacation luck. I don’t know if there is such a thing as vacation luck, but if there is…well, we don’t have any. Nothing disastrous or life-threatening, mind you. Just moments that make you want your money back. Don’t believe me? Think I’m exaggerating? Here’s a quick list just of some of the vacation expectations that I spent both time and money planning and dreaming about:

  • We planned a kayaking trip while we were in Hawaii across a bay where we would snorkel before kayaking back.
  • While both boys were studying American History, we planned a Spring Break trip to Colonial Williamsburg and Washington D.C. during peak cherry blossom season.
  • We rented a cozy cabin in the Sequoia National Forest while we explored and hiked and went horseback riding in the forest.
  • We surprised the boys at Christmas with a Disney Cruise which left the following month.
  • We booked a ski trip to Lake Tahoe where the boys would take snowboarding lessons and enjoy time in the snow.
Vacations are fun and exciting. You count down the days until you leave. You make sure there’s plenty of space on your phone for all of the pictures you are going to take. You pack and plan and prepare, all with anticipation. Expectations are high. So it stands to reason that when things don’t go the way you intended, the way that you dreamed they would, you would get a little upset. When it happens once? Your disappointment is short lived and quickly replaced with better memories. When it happens every time you go on vacation? You start to feel cursed.
  • Since we were on a work trip with Derek, we only had one day to do something fun all together. The day we were scheduled to kayak in Hawaii it was extremely windy. The bay was rough, making it difficult to paddle. When we finally made it to the other side, the snorkeling was cut short so we could get back before the weather got worse. On the way back, Palmer’s motion sickness kicked in and he started throwing up over the side of his kayak. Total bummer.
  • An Arctic blast moved into Virginia the week of our D.C. trip causing us to postpone the trip until the summer. Everything I booked, all of the plans I made included our private tour of the U.S. Capitol building that I spent months getting, all lost.
  • The cabin in the Sequoia was down this long road with lots of short twists and turns making Palmer extremely carsick. Even though it was June, it was unusually cold. It was really cold up the mountains. We were completely underdressed and were freezing all night long. The next day we drove back down the mountain, Palmer throwing up the whole way, to find another place to stay. Everything was booked except this shit box of a place that we finally settled on. Misery.
  • The weather for the Disney Cruise in January, even though it was Florida, was cold. Really cold. Like you don’t want to even bother getting in the heated pool kind of cold. One day into the cruise, I caught a horrible stomach bug that kept me quarantined to my room for the rest of the trip. I was disappointed but grateful it was me and not one of the boys. The last night, Palmer was up with the bug which later included throwing up on the plane ride home all the way from Orlando to L.A. Good times.
  • And the latest trip…Our drive up to Tahoe took 5 hours longer than it should due to snow, Palmer getting carsick on the way up (seeing a pattern here?) The next morning, while waiting in line to pick up our rentals, Bentley started throwing up in his hands thanks to altitude sickness, causing him to miss his snowboarding lesson. Palmer hated his snowboarding lesson so the day was a total bust. The next morning, after heavy snow all night long, the entire mountain was shut down due to the wind and the threat of an avalanche. The heavy snow continued all day leaving us with little choice but to sit in the hotel room. And finally the last day we gear up to find that the majority of the mountain was experiencing a power outage. You just can’t make this stuff up people.

And like I said, this is just a snapshot of the bad vacation luck that we’ve experienced. With each vacation, we made the most of the trip, did what we could to still enjoy ourselves. But after writing out the details, I have come to realize that vomiting comes in first place for ruining our vacations, bad weather as a close second.

There’s really nothing we can do about either one. It’s become a family joke. We’ve gotten used to having vacations either partially or totally ruined. Of course, this hasn’t stopped us from vacationing. We will book more vacations. There will be more vomiting. There will be more bad weather. It will all happen and for years and years to come one of our favorite parts of each vacation will be laughing about our bad luck. I guess there are worse family traditions to have.


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