Pete’s Vacation Peeves

| Opinion | July 15, 2017

Summer at last. The kids are out of school and time for a long overdue vacation. Suitcases packed, we were ready for an exciting trip back east to New York City and my hometown of Boston. All in all, the trip went great, but I don’t think anyone goes on vacation without at least one experience that gets them peeved.

Vacation Peeve 1. Finally, after weeks of planning, we were on the plane to New York City. So, I put on the headphones and settled in for what should have been an enjoyable and uneventful flight. Hours passed and I decided to use the lavatory one more time before we landed. But, just as I locked the door, the plane hit terrible turbulence and started to bounce and sway back and forth. Hanging on for dear life with one hand, I tried to keep my balance while finishing my business, and then carefully stumbled back to my seat, trying not to fall into anyone’s lap on the way.

I did my best to keep calm, but the pilot was powering his way through the turbulence so fast and descending so quickly that the plane was shaking like a washing machine in spin cycle with an uneven load. Barf bag in hand, I felt like I could lose my lunch at any minute and was moaning so loud that the passenger to my right was doing all she could to get as far away from me as possible. Meanwhile, my wife was on my left, fanning me with the in-flight instruction book as I prayed to GOD to make the turbulence stop. (I just hope HE doesn’t hold me to the promises I made.)

Finally, we landed! As my family and fellow passengers slowly recovered from the flight from hell, I put away my unused barf bag and took a sigh of relief. Then I saw him. A cocky, young pilot coming out of the cockpit with a big smile on his face. Proud that he had gotten us in 20 minutes early, he jauntily exited the plane, totally unaware of the sick passengers he was leaving behind. Was I peeved? You Bet! But I was more relieved that I hadn’t heaved and lost my lunch somewhere over New Jersey.

Vacation Peeve 2. I Love Pizza! So, while my family was in New York City, one of the highlights was to treat the kids to some authentic New York Pizza. I searched reviews for the best pizza in town and found a popular pizzeria on 44th Street.


My mouth was watering as we stood in the long line to get in. Then there was the 20-minute wait to be seated, but it was all going to be worth it because we were going to eat some amazing, authentic New York pizza.

We ordered and finally the waiter brought us the pizza. Hmm. It looked a little thin but I didn’t let that bother me. Then I took a bite and it tasted like burned toast with sauce and cheese on it. I turned it over and the bottom was all black and charred. I called the waiter over and complained, but he explained that all their pizzas come out of the brick oven that way. So, my wife and kids did their best to eat around the burned parts but, needless to say, I was really disappointed and a little peeved.

Days later, we were in downtown Boston looking for somewhere to get lunch when we noticed this little pizza shop called “New York Pizza.” I figured if a Boston pizza shop has the nerve to call itself New York Pizza, it was worth a try. We went inside, ordered and out came this gigantic, delicious pizza with cheese dripping off of every slice. The best pizza I ever ate. So, I finally got my authentic New York pizza, but I had to go to Boston to get it.
Vacation Peeve 3. Like most parents, I freak out when I don’t know where my kids are. It has been an adjustment dealing with my two young teenage girls and their need for independence. Usually, I can manage my anxiety when they suddenly go off by themselves or decide to ignore my text messages. But, it was the last day in New York City before checking out of the hotel room that really got me peeved.

We had just finished our complimentary breakfast on the lower level of the hotel, when the kids decided they would go on ahead to get us an elevator to go back to our room. Well, my youngest, 14-year-old daughter suddenly disappeared, and the oldest was wandering around trying to find her. Was she in the restroom? Was she in the elevator? “Maybe she is in the lobby!” I said. So, we rushed up the flight of stairs to the lobby, but she was nowhere to be found.

I was frantically texting her, when my oldest daughter, unable to get an elevator at the lobby, decided to go up eight flights of stairs to our room to see if her sister was there. Great, now I have two kids wandering somewhere around the hotel. Meanwhile, my wife was still in the cafeteria grabbing some free muffins to take with us, just in case the kids got hungry later.

After another few minutes of texting and calling everyone in the family with no response, my youngest finally replies, “I’m in the room. Where else would I be?” Meanwhile, my other daughter decided to catch the elevator at the third floor, and we all eventually met up back in the room, safe and sound. So, all was well … except for the poor people in the room next to us who were probably awakened by the sound of me yelling at the top of my lungs, “Don’t you ever do that again!”

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