When Jason and I first started dating, we made sure to travel together at least once or twice a year. We still travel as a family, but the mommy/daddy trips have certainly tapered off. So, for my birthday this year—the third week of October—we decided it was time! Fall is an extremely busy season for us both, so a weekend relaxing was top of the list. Rather than being adventurous and trying something new, we decided to go to our favorite vacation destination: The Cheeca Lodge in Islamorada, Florida.
Hurricane Irma ripped through the Florida Keys, devastating the region.
Three weeks prior to our departure, the Cheeca canceled our reservation. We were certainly disappointed, but decided to turn this into an opportunity and visit a bucket list destination: Napa Valley. No further story necessary. Four days prior to our departure, our hotel in Napa called and canceled our reservation, due to devastating, deadly wildfires.
The question: Do we still go, or stay home?
We certainly needed some relaxation. We were concerned that devastation may follow. And we decided to risk it! We flew into San Francisco, but headed two hours south to Monterey, California.
(I wish I could say this is where the story ends. But that wouldn't be a good story, right?)
Our bad luck continued.
I lost my glasses in the airport—or, rather, left them in one of our few stops due to the flight being delayed. I was no help navigating to the hotel at 11 p.m., in my sunglasses. The next day, we drove to Monterey, arrived at our hotel around lunchtime, and asked the concierge for a great sushi recommendation. It was just our luck! They let us know there was a gas line out on Cannery Row, so all the restaurants were closed.
Seriously not what two foodies wanted to hear.
The next evening, we had reservations at one of the top-ranked restaurants in Monterey. We couldn't wait! The Uber driver pulled up to a dark building saying this was it. We couldn't believe it: No lights; no activity. Finally, someone came up and told us someone clipped their power during construction. The restaurant was closed.
Our Uber driver had already picked up another ride, so there we were in the middle of town, stunned by our luck!
The trip ended as it started, with a four-hour delay—the kind where you board the flight, get out on the tarmac, turn around, come back in and deplane. We missed our connection in Detroit, but eventually made it home for a few hours of sleep before the work week started.
Luck was certainly not on our side.
But I will say this. We drove the Pacific Coast Highway, walked the streets of Monterey and Carmel, walked on the course at Pebble Beach, napped, read books, ate some great food, went to the spa for an amazing massage and drank champagne every day for lunch. We talked, laughed and connected in a way you just can't at home.
It's certainly #forcedcouplefun when things don't go the way you imagine ... But it makes it fun when you adapt, laugh and just live in the moment.
On to our next adventure!
Kasie Smith is the president and publisher of West Michigan Woman. She and her husband, Jason, are fans of food, travel and golf—and their twin sons, Jackson and Spencer. Watch WestMichiganWoman.com for more stops on their Foodie Tour! And click here to learn more about Forced Couple Fun.
Photos Courtesy of Kasie Smith.