The Dog Ate My Homework and Other Tales from the Road

Filed in Out of Our Head by on October 2, 2014 8 Comments

I travel a lot. I average 75,000 airline miles a year without leaving the US. Most of the time I have no issue with traveling, but it is rarely as glamorous as non-travelers imagine.

Airline seats are really too small (3 sets of reasonably sized shoulders DO NOT fit). Living out of a suitcase can be challenging (particularly if you are like me and tend to spill). Eating out is only fun if you can change the menu regularly (not usually the case at conventions). Even so, the fun of meeting new knitters, sharing knowledge and doing something I truly love almost always outweighs any negatives. However, once in a while, things get a bit more challenging!

You Can’t Get There From Here

One of the biggest ongoing travel challenges is getting from the West Coast to the Eastern Time Zone. To arrive at a somewhat reasonable hour (in the evening), I have to be boarding a plane rather early. A 6:30AM flight is painful enough when the airport is an hour away, but completely unrealistic if I am flying out of the larger airports 2-3 hours from my house. What this means is that sometimes the only reasonable option is to take a red-eye flight (overnight) and arrive early with the plan to take a long nap before things get underway.

This was the plan for my most recent trip to Maine. As is usually the case, I was not able to really sleep at all, so the nap in the afternoon was critical to the overall success of the weekend. However, that plan worked surprisingly well. The only downside was that soon after I was on the plane I realized that I didn’t pack the additional skein I knew I would need to finish the project I had brought. Luckily, I had a back-up project with me (no such thing as over-packing knitting projects)!!

That was Wednesday and Thursday!

The Dog Ate My Homework

Friday seemed to be going very well. I had great students, the weather was AMAZING and the location was beautiful beyond words. See what I mean!


What I did not know was that things were not going quite so well back at the homestead. What I discovered in a text late on Saturday from my husband was the following:

“Zeph was a bit bad. Call and I’ll explain.”

This was an understatement! For some reason the UPS folks put Friday’s packages inside the fence (not their normal protocol) and Zeph decided that they were dog toys. Her “favorite” was a book I am scheduled to review next week that now has no real resemblance to its original form! Luckily one of the students had a copy I could review in detail that had not had a close encounter with a great dane’s mouth!

I had never used the excuse before, but on Friday, the dog ate my homework!

Liquid and Electronics Don’t Mix

Saturday I was scheduled to give a presentation on Finishing Hacks. It included a PowerPoint slide show with embedded video clips — very uptown! However, as I arrived about 15 – 20 minutes early to get set-up, I discovered the bottle in my bag had leaked! I had not put the top on as securely as I had thought.

The liquid had gotten into the laptop and it showed no signs of life when I went to turn it on.

So the presentation was made with no visuals. Luckily I had already prepared the slides to be downloaded so the attendees could fill in the blanks at their convenience!

You Never Know Who You Will Meet

Sunday after the conclusion of the retreat I headed from Maine to Nashville for another meeting. With all my travel I occasionally (and gratefully) get upgraded to First-Class. Although my flight was delayed due to some mechanical issues I had the pleasure of meeting someone famous in the adjacent seat.

As is often the case, I had no idea when I began the conversation. But with time we introduced ourselves (I still had no specific recognition). But as the conversation continued I discovered I was chatting with the keyboardist from Journey, Jonathan Cain.

Then on my trip home from Nashville to Fresno I sat next to Jim Gaffigan on his way to headline at the Fresno County Fair. Once again, I had no idea who he was until we were nearly done with the flight. Obviously I have never been much of a fangirl!

I am sure more adventures await next week as I head to Stitches East. So what was one of your most interesting traveling adventures?

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