During spring break of my sophomore year at NYU, my roommate Lyzz and I were seemingly stuck in NYC. Everyone else was going home, but flights to our respective homes (Houston and Louisville) were hovering at $500, which was just absurd. We reluctantly decided we would have to just stay on campus, which is really just a week of vacation in Greenwich Village and not exactly your typical quad.
That would have been a well and dandy vacation, had I not been obsessed with the Last Minute Travel section of the Village Voice. There it was: $150 (including taxes) per person round trip to London, England. I think we were each convinced it was a scam until we boarded that plane at JFK, but we did indeed have a week's worth of adventures in London and Edinburgh for far less than it would have cost us to go home. Amen for hostels!
That's also when I learned the near and present importance of having a valid passport with you at all times. Had Lyzzie and I not been thus prepared, we would not have discovered the Baked Potato Shop in Edinburgh nor have had the opportunity to watch the West Point Rugby team drink the entire airplane dry.
To this day I remain obsessed with travel websites and airfares. For example, if you'd like to go to Cancun tomorrow, it's only $500 including flight, taxes, and hotel.
But I can't go with you.
Because I sent my passport off for renewal this morning. I am stuck. No last-minute trips to Amsterdam with FWT. No cashing in those frequent flier points for a weekend in the Bahamas. Stuck!
Really, it seems silly that in 2011, you STILL have to mail in your current passport in order to renew it. They all have barcodes by now, so can't they just make the barcode inactive or something once they mail you your new one? Hmpf.
Anyway, I paid the extra $60 for expedited service because I am already freaking out at the knowledge of being passportless for at least two weeks.
I hope I don't need to flee.