Let me tell you the story of my long awaited trip.
A few months ago, my friend says, let’s take a road trip from San Francisco to Missoula.
I say, you twisted my arm, say when.
My friend gives me dates, I check my calendar, I purchase tickets.
I’m all excited.
My friend calls me two days later to tell me he is having second thoughts, and wants to make this trip alone.
I say, fine, no big deal. I have tickets to San Francisco. I’ll find things to do.
I think I’ll drive up the Pacific Coast Highway to Seattle to see my cousins.
I call one of my cousins and she says, get up here sooner. We could use your help at church.
I say, I’ve already spent $800 on a rental car. It’s nonrefundable.
My cousin says, fuggetaboutit! We’ll pay for your ticket to Seattle.
I purchase tickets from San Francisco to Seattle on their credit card. $200. But I can’t let the rental car loss go.
I contact Hotwire and they won’t budge. Once you press that button, your money’s ours and we’re not giving it back.
I say, but I was trying to be nice and all, helping out my cousin’s church. I plead, I groan, I whine.
Hotwire says, no dice.
I say, can I speak to your supervisor.
Hotwire says, they’ll tell you the same thing. Can we help you with anything else?
I say, you haven’t helped me with why I called yet. What makes you think I’ll ask your help for anything else?
Hotwire says, well then have a nice day.
I call National Car Rental. They say, there’s nothing we can do.
I ask, can I pick up the car at Seattle instead of San Francisco? I still want to use it. It’s not like I’m asking for a refund.
National Car Rental says, it’s Hotwire’s decision. We don’t have your money yet.
I say, they told me to call you.
National Car Rental says, ask to speak to a supervisor. At least they were trying to be nice, feeling my pain. But really, no dice either.
I call my cousin in Seattle and whine again that I’m taking a $800 loss, and I haven’t even left home yet.
My cousin says, fuggetaboutit! We’ll make up for it by having fun while you’re in town.
I say, $800 worth of fun? Really, Hotwire and National Rental Car should make more effort to help me out, don’t you think?
My cousin says, by the way, we won’t really need you to get here in a hurry. We have three other priests lined up before we might really need you.
I don’t stop to think.
I say, then I’m driving up like my original plan. It’ll take me two days to get to Seattle, up the Pacific Coast Highway. Solitude. Then again on the way back to fly out of San Francisco.
She says, that’s okay. We’ll swallow our $200 loss.
I say, San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria, here I come!
And guess what? Deacon Chris and his wife Peggy will meet me in Victoria. He’s playing music at the cathedral on Sunday 2 August. I have a car and a passport. Whooheee!
Leaving Washington Dulles (IAD) @ 9:50 PM today. Arriving San Francisco International (SFO) @ 12:26 AM early early morning. Will be catching some zzz’s at the Best Western before hitting the road.