I had three moments of horror on my past trip to Arizona – and I mean horror, scares, all sorts of imaging a future that might be; I don’t want to dilute the word, or reserve it for guys in hockey masks, but you understand. A notch up from fear, most of it theoretical.
The third one is personal and not to be talked about right here, right now. Although we’re good, fine, healthy.
The first occurred on Sunday as I was leaving Flagstaff for my trip down to Payson to see my mom. It had snowed for 24 hours on Saturday, and although Sunday was bright and beautiful, and so damn picturesque I was tempted to take an extra hour and wander around town, I resisted; maybe I should return sooner than later.
My rental car was covered with what suspiciously looked like a foot of snow, so I borrowed an ice scraper from the hotel clerk, who demanded my driver’s license as collateral. After a good 25-30 minutes cleaning off the snow, I returned the tool and got my ID back.
Although I was not my ID. It was the driver’s license for a California dude who maybe had a passing resemblance, or maybe was just about the same age and build. I noticed it right away and got that straightened out, but couldn’t help imagine finding this out just before I went through security at Sky Harbor.
Secondly, my iPhone bricked up on me, as I was sitting in Mom’s house, just trying to access her Wifi network – a network I installed and secured. Just went into Recovery mode, that phone, needing a computer with iTunes to fix. Mom does not have iTunes, and the fun and hours began.
This is where we are, then, and what we do. Traveling without my phone? Might as well send me to Mars without some extra oxygen. For a moment I was stuck in the 21st century, desperately trying to remember how I handled this situation in 1987.
All turned out well. I am who my ID says I am, and Apple swiftly took me back to factory and then restored by latest back-up (two days before). My pictures from the trip were safety stored on iCloud, losing only a few videos.
It could have been worse, then, and that stuck around for the entire trip. I have so much to say about this reunion, even though I tried in this week’s column (I got home with about an hour to meet my deadline, so I did the best I could and left the good thoughts off somewhere for another time).
And I suppose I could make some statement about our safety lines to technology, or the state of the TSA, or even the state of sloppy desk clerks, but really: Bottom line here. It snowed like nobody’s business in April in Flagstaff, and as far as I knew everyone managed just fine. The roads off the mountain were clear if wet, and the hotel we stayed at was surprisingly elegant and even fancy.
I got home safe, in other words, but probably not the same. I have other things to say, but also other things to do. There’s an ordination this weekend, and I do believe I need some clothes. There are serious homeowner issues, long put off, that need to be addressed. Taxes had to be mailed, clothes needed to be washed, photos from the weekend photoshopped to get rid of wrinkles: Busy busy.
But something happened, something subtle, something nice, and as soon as I figure it out I’ll let you know. Laundry awaits in the meantime.