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“If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” ~ Woody Allen

May 23, 2022

Some people are planners, and some are not. Skip and I claim that we can be “spontaneous” but that is probably not a true statement. Most of our life is carefully planned out, and our vacations are certainly planned. I don’t understand when people don’t make a plan, and then complain that they did not get to do what they would have liked to do.

Several months before any Disney trip, our children know in advance that they will be asked what restaurant they want to eat at for Dinner. The park opening times impact our day’s activities. Our three children knew that if they rode in the car with Skip, even at five years old, they would be asked to outline their five-year plan.

Covid-19 had thrown a monkey wrench into planning. We are all happy to be alive and well, but from a strange perspective, planners could not plan. We had two bigger vacations planned and with a lot of money and time invested in them that were rescheduled a few times with the pandemic and they both ended up being scheduled concurrently for April/May of this year. If you have been following my blog, then you know we had a lovely week and a half on a river cruise on tulip time in Amsterdam, followed by a few days in Italy highlighted by Venice and Lake Como.

Finally, we were off to Greece for our ten-day Viking Ocean cruise, or so we thought. We landed in Athens and made it to our hotel which has a view of the Acropolis.

Then we walked to our appointments for mandatory pre-cruise testing. We had all been vaccinated, received multiple boosters, had worn masks, and adhered to handwashing and sanitizing. Long story short, this was my result. “No!” I said to the lab tech or whatever she was. “No, no, and no.” And so we paid for two more retests – same results. Gary, Tom, Barbara, and Skip tested negative and Peggy tested positive.

The stops on the Viking Ocean Cruise of Greece we were not going to see!

Skip spent the next several hours on the phone canceling the cruise for the four of us and searching for a place to stay while we waited until we were able to travel back home as the US rules even for vaccinated and boosted US citizens required a negative test 24 hours prior to boarding a flight. Barbara and Tom went on the cruise while the four of us tried to make a new plan.

After a sleepless night in the New Hotel in Athens which was centrally located but incredibly noisy, we headed to Dolce Athens Attica Riviera, which boasted that it was only twenty minutes from the airport and a hidden seaside gem.

The hotel was lovely, and the staff was courteous and helpful. It was quiet, and the landscape was beautiful, but it was not our cruise and we lived in fear of Skip and Gary testing positive which would reset the clocks for our return to the USA. If going to this resort had been our plan, it would have been fine, but it was not.

Despite feeling well, I was overwhelmed. My mind went seemingly 24/7 and jet lag and sleeplessness added to my anxiety.

“Some things are so unexpected that no one is prepared for them.” ~ Leo Rosten

I tried to push down the constant worry with questions such as “what would you be doing if you were on your cruise right now?” And I answered myself ( which is strange to be talking to myself) “I’d be taking photos, eating, drinking, and enjoying being with my friends while staying safe.”

There were dozens of cats wandering around and we assigned them names from the play Cats!

“In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this.”~Terry Pratchett

We hung out together, we did not go into town or interact with anyone except the front desk staff, the online doctors to help clear us to fly, the restaurant and bar staff, and many hours spent on chat or phone hold with Delta Airlines agents attempting to change our flights. Our end goal was always the same, win the world series, arrive home safely!

We made it home safe and sound after my documentation of recovery from COVID certificate was double-checked at the airport security. The flights were long and sleepless but we and our luggage made it. Jet lag and a positive COVID test (asymptomatic) lasted a few more days. Our dog Frankie survived pancreatitis and dehydration and hospitalization while we were away. I’d say it was a lot to process and somedays I am not back to “normal” but I am trying to regain my sense of humor.

Not surprisingly, our calendars are full and we currently have trips in the fall and then spring and summer of 2023! Perhaps Winston Churchill said it best.

“Always remember: if you’re going through hell, keep going.”

“Always remember, nothing is as bad as it seems.”

~Helen Fielding

  1. Arlene permalink

    Linda I have always been a planner and it’s always great to know when and where your going, having said that I learned one important thing in life recently and that is take one day at a time .

  2. Annalinda permalink

    Sorry to hear all this happened. Sounds like you were always asymptomatic. Hope you’re recovering from the whole emotional Rollercoaster.

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