So there I was thinking that I was just a sort of big old hippie, when the Polynesians blew into town for the Tavai family reunion. They arrived on the August long weekend – the weekend when the Gay Pride parade was on, the finals for the fireworks competition and Seafest. Now, they have had 4 years – FOUR YEARS – to plan for this vacation to Canada.
So here was my first lesson in what laid back really means. The first to arrive flew in from Australia without telling a soul she was coming, other than the group that was flying in from New Zealand at the exact same time. She sat at the airport from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. and then STARTED GETTING WORRIED that no one was going to pick her up!!! At that point, she facebooked someone who found out where the group was supposed to stay and managed, by some miracle, to get a room at the same motel. This had to be the last room available in Vancouver this weekend.
We went to the airport to pick up the NZ group, who were surprised that the Aussie traveller wasn’t there waiting. That’s when one of the NZ group disappeared, wandering around the airport and having the Aussie paged for an hour before we finally found someone on facebook who told us she’d gone to the motel on her own. Several people then had to scatter around the airport to find the missing Kiwi.
Then off we went to the car rental counter because we were told that the family had rented a 15-seater van for the week. Well, that was the second lesson on “laid back-edness”. It seems that they INTENDED to rent a vehicle but actually hadn’t. They were pretty surprised that it was going to cost $1500 for 3 days for the van so they decided to wait and trusted that we would get them to wherever they had to go.
It was about at this point that I realized that I really am not all that laid back. My brain was frantically scrambling to figure out how we were going to get 12 people into 2 sub-compact cars.
We ended up cramming a
We ended up cramming a
s many as we could into my small car, grabbed a taxi for the others and off we went.We managed to get the group to the 2 different motels they had booked and finally met with the Aussie traveller who was surprised that we were surprised that she was here at all.
At the motel, we also learned that, because they had booked at the last possible second, the rooms were small, had only 1 bed and no kitchenette and, of course, no air conditioning. Did I mention that Vancouver is in the middle of a heat wave? And that there are going to be 3 or 4 to a room....with one double bed?
But everyone got tucked in and tomorrow we’re relocating some of the NZ group to the motel that the others are already booked into.
Meanwhile, I’m thinking of taking some valium.