Drumming my fingers on the counter of an upscale London hotel, a million things are running through my mind. How could our taxi driver bring us to the wrong hotel? On top of that, why would I agree to pile my luggage into a separate taxi entrusting that the other driver would simply “meet us there”?
After landing in London, my University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point travel partners and I were told to go to St. Giles hotel, where we would be staying the following night. We were unaware that there are two St. Giles hotels: one in central London and one ten minutes from the airport. An hour later, we found ourselves separated from the rest of our group and our luggage.
Fortunately, after a few calls and after receiving assurance our bags had arrived at the correct hotel, I let out a deep breath and felt my heart start beating again. In the taxi ride back, I began to think about a book I read prior to departing for my semester abroad.
The author emphasized that the plans we make for ourselves are almost never cohesive with real life. By releasing this emotional attachment to plans, it is much easier to remain calm when they suddenly change. These evidently hapless accidents usually turn out to be more interesting than our original plans.
After recalling this piece of advice I couldn’t help but laugh at the panic I endured minutes before.
Odds are this will not be the last seemingly unfortunate event that will occur in my next four months abroad. Which in retrospect, is probably the most exciting aspect of this experience.
The best part is I will be sharing every success, disaster, embarrassing mishap and change of plans with you. Stay tuned, Pointers, I feel we’re going to have a perfectly chaotic adventure together.