August 26, 2011

Cartagena, Spain. November, 2010

Flexibility. Not my strongest suit. Planning, prepping, making great strength. So you can imagine how I’d prepared for our Barcelona-to-Lisbon sailing, our first cruise, with stops along the way in Mallorca (where Jay had spent some of his childhood), coastal Andalusian ports, a brief stop in Portimao before arriving in Lisbon. I’d even booked flights and hotels to allow for a brief stay in each end city. And a good thing I did, too. Why? Twenty-four hours before leaving for the airport (almost on the dot), an email arrives from the cruise company. Mechanical failure. Change of ship. Cruise shifted a day later. Change in itinerary. No Mallorca. OK, what could I change? What was out of my hands? I scrambled online and found a cheap same-day round-trip flight from Barcelona to Mallorca during our “extra” day there and booked it. I was on the phone with the cruise company who offered a complimentary hotel stay (and meal vouchers) for the extra Barcelona night. I shortened the Lisbon hotel reservation. And then I tried to get some sleep. Unsuccessfully. But still, the new itinerary featured unexpected and welcome stops in Valencia, Cartagena and Tangier. "Go with the flow," they say. With some effort we did.

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