Friday, July 07, 2006

20 Things I Learned On My Vacation

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I learned a lot on my short weekend trip to my BF's wedding. I decided to share my newfound knowledge with all of you, for lack of having anything else to blog about other than how much the middle of a book sucks to write. Now, I did not experience each of these lessons personally, but I am wise enough to learn from the mistakes of others. Most of them, sadly, are just normal parts of my life.

  1. Never use the steam setting of an iron on a dress with a big tag that says “DO NOT USE STEAM.”
  2. If you scribble furiously on a piece of paper while on the plane or in the waiting area of the gate, the people next to you will most definitely read over your shoulder to see what’s so interesting. Write in code or so sloppy they can’t decipher it.
  3. I-5 between Portland and Eugene is completely empty at 2AM. Set the cruise to 70 and kick back with some Jack in the Box bacon cheddar potato wedges.
  4. The Maid of Honor does everything. This includes lying to the bride constantly to keep her from freaking out about the fact that the wedding starts in 15 minutes and all the guys JUST SHOWED UP.
  5. Do not ever, ever eat Jordan Almonds. Even if you suck on them until they’re baby food, a broken tooth inevitably waits. I went to the dentist yesterday morning. Can you say “$800 crown?”
  6. Even if you write your maid of honor speech in advance, make sure it’s witty and not too sentimental, you will still cry halfway through it while 150 people are watching you.
  7. Don’t make your wedding programs too early. One of your attendants might decide to elope in Reno the weekend of your wedding and you’ll have to sit up until 2AM the night before the wedding folding and tying ribbons on the new ones.
  8. Not all hotel smoke detectors are electrically powered. Some have batteries and these batteries can and will go out at 2:45 in the morning. Don't expect the night shift guy at the front desk to come to your rescue with a ladder and some AA's.
  9. Flower girls and ring bearers will always do something silly. If you want a serious wedding, don’t have them.
  10. The fireworks sold in Vancouver are WAY better than the ones here and are, most likely, illegal here for good reason.
  11. Staying at a hotel across the street from U of O while a basketball camp is in town is just like living in a dorm, only it costs $80 a night and there's no RA.
  12. Always stay true to what you want. It doesn’t matter if your mother thinks your wedding cake looks like it danced out of the Mad Hatter’s Tea party, if you like it, have it. It’s your cake. Same goes with anything else in life.
  13. The city of Eugene, Oregon was laid out entirely by stoned hippies with no concept of how streets should flow.
  14. Register for a lot of towels. They’re expensive and for some reason, wedding guests just seem compelled to buy them.
  15. Sadly, despite what we write, not all wedding nights are what you expect them to be. Sometimes, after all the hoopla, the wedding, reception, the after the end of the night, you’re glad to sleep anywhere, even your new mother-in-law’s house. Sexy, huh?
  16. If you go for a spray tan at the salon, don’t use white towels, wear white bras, or let anyone see your hands for the next week. Be liberal with the blocking lotion.
  17. If you change clothes in a field at the reception while hovering behind a car door, you’ll probably lose your wallet.
  18. If you ever stay in a $45 a night hotel by the airport, keep your socks on. Even in the shower. You’ll catch cooties if you don’t.
  19. It is 100% worth it to be a member of a rental car club, like Avis. Sometimes, they’ll just upgrade you for no good reason. What would I have done if they had given me the Oldsmobile Alero I rented instead of the wonderful Ford Freestyle with the fold down seats? I would have had to put the flowers, the wedding cake, all the programs AND 2 bridesmaids in the trunk. Not pretty.
  20. And finally...when it’s all said and done, despite everything that goes wrong, if, at the end of the day the couple is’s all good.

A very eventful couple of days, I'll tell you. Feel free to share any tidbits of wisdom you might have garnered over the summer travels thus far. Oh yeah, and as promised, here's the green dress. It's got too much yellow to be lime, fortunately not nearly as neon as it looked on Anyway, I made it look GOOD!

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(PS. Check out the numbers below! I'm only 6% from officially being out of the middle and on my way to the end!)

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
42,500 / 70,000


Playground Monitor said...

(1) Always carry a book or something like crossword puzzles or Sudoko to keep you occupied in an airport terminal. Without Stephanie Plum to keep me company, those two 4+ hour delays would have been really bad. Sure they have paperback books in the newsstand at the airport, but I don't have a discount card for those stores.

(2) Adopt an "if I forget to pack it, I can just buy it" attitude when packing. Sure I made a list, but I still managed to forget Aleve, allergy eye drops and Icy Hot. No biggie. St. Simons Island has a CVS. Of course if you're headed for outer Mongolia, it's a different story.

Anonymous said...

You looked fabulous in your green bridesmaid dress.

Smarty Pants said...

Why, thank you, Anonymous! If I knew who you were, I'd kiss you. I try not to make it a habit of kissing strangers, you know. :)

Problem Child said...

The green isn't bad as you led us to believe. And you look fabu.

Your list was much better than my list...


Maven Linda Howard said...

You really did make the dress look good; I would, however, seriously reconsider a friendship with someone who chose that color for her maid of honor. You can get back at her when you take the plunge, though :-).

My rules for travel? I make a packing list, writing down everything as I pack it, and I also note the cost of the item and which suitcase it's in. If the airline ever loses one of my suitcases, I have them nailed.

I also put complete outfits in each suitcase, so even if one gets lost, I'm still okay with clothes and matching shoes, etc. I even divide my underwear between suitcases.

But my number one rule for travel is: be pleasant. It would take a catastrophe before I'd get upset with someone just trying to do his or her job. I never ask for special treatment, and I always try to smile and say thank you.

Linda Winstead Jones said...

If I can stop laughing long enough to type anything . . .

You look great in the green dress! It's not quite the lime green I had envisioned, luckily for you.

As for rules -- maybe I'll thin of something later. All I can think of now would be something about sleeping in a double bed with hubby after 34 years in a king, or not wearing anything I wouldn't throw away to Disney when it's over 90 degrees.


Kathy said...

You look positively beautiful, SP!

Here's what I've learned.
1. Don't sqeeze the arm rest with one hand and clutch a cross in another during take-off. That's a dead give-a-way you're very religious or uncomfortable flying.

2. Don't drink coke and eat peanut butter crackers on a long trip when you're susceptable to car sickness. (And always remember when there is a towel in the back seat, use it.)

3. When searching for a new home or traveling on vacation, children will be injured. Always know your way to the hospital!

4. Want excitement and thrills while on vacation? Rent a pop-up camper and try to sleep through a Tropical Storm.

5. After learning a language for 6 months and graduating with honors, don't be shocked when you've arrived at the airport and no one understands that you're asking for the location of the bathroom.

And finally, don't bring the boyfriend home when your dogs want attention. You'll spend the entire evening witnessing Brokeback Doggie.


Smarty Pants said...
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Smarty Pants said...

LJ - are you laughing at me, Linda, or the dress??

Being nice to airport staff is always the best call. They didn't break the plane, they didn't make the snow storm at O'Hare and they certainly can't make it better just cause you're yelling at them. They can, however, put you on another flight quicker, with more mileage, or in first class, though, so being nice to them has its benefits.


Playground Monitor said...

Ditto on that "be pleasant" advice. I cannot tell you how tired I got of hearing people whine Wednesday night when a thunderstorm delayed our flight out of Atlanta. But I did think it was a little tacky for the airline to only offer beverage service to first class. Those of us in steerage had waited a long time too. :grin: Granted it's only a 30 minute flight but on the flight over last week they gave us a bottle of water.

Linda Winstead Jones said...

SP, you were too lovely to laugh at. All of Linda's advice was solid. I nodded my head, but there was no laughter. Your list, however, was just too visial and funny.

BTW, on my vacation to Florida, my 5 yr old grandson gave himself the nickname "Dr. Smartypants." Does that mean we're related now? :-)


Smarty Pants said...

Oh! We have a doctor in the family! How lovely! :)