When I’m travelling as much as I have been lately, the trips and their components - airlines, car rental companies, hotels, wives - begin to jumble around in my mind, and if I haven’t written the specifics in my Palm Pilot, you might find me standing at the Hertz counter insisting I have a reservation when it’s actually with Dollar, or vice versa. (The part about the wives is a little easier to track, as they’re all in different cities).
Last night, as my plane approached Seattle, I began to ponder whether the ride-share shuttles would be running (it was approaching 11pm), or if I would have to take a taxi home. The difference is $25 vs. $40, and my clients will pay for either, but I personally like the idea of the ride-share both-ways process.
Then, as the wheels came down, I remembered that I had driven to the airport and parked for this trip, since it was less than 3 days and the parking was cheaper than the cab fares. I forgot it again briefly as I waited for my luggage to roll around the carousel, but, once my bags were in my hands, I walked up to the 5th floor of the parking garage. At least this time I remembered my floor and row. There have been occasions when I’ve wandered from floor to floor in anguished befuddlement, once with co-workers I’d offered rides cooling their heels at the elevator and relishing the Phil-story leverage they’d have the next day at work.
So I walked down row 5I looking for my familiar kayak rack and maroon Accord, and it was nowhere to be found. I walked up and down the row a couple of times, wondering if I had parked in a space marked for towing. I was just about to go pay a visit to port security to see if they’d towed any cars when I remembered that I’d driven the white Civic instead of the Accord. I drive it very infrequently, and it’s simply not in my pattern-recognition image library.
I walked back up the row, threw in my junk and drove without further confusion to the right house and the right wife.