Mere mortals....

I like to think I can do the basics in life.  Like get dressed.  Have a job.  Have some hobbies.  Go to the movies.

 I decided to book an airline flight. A long flight. And use my miles to get there. My daughter and her husband live in Christchurch, New Zealand. That's where I wanted to go. I've been twice before but it's been about five or six years.

Aha! The internet awaits me! I got on United's website.  And this is what I came up with.  United could take me from San Francisco, to Seattle, to Vancouver, to Sydney, Australia. Then it would be a short hop (3-4 hours?) over to Christchurch.

So let's see. That would take me about three days. It's long enough at about 17 hours. Really? Oh, and for business class it would cost me $12,000 US. Hhmmm, it didn't cost that much before. Oh, you can't use your miles for biz class. Really? But you can use 150,000 of your miles, all of them, to travel steerage.

I got on Air New Zealand's website. I was lost and I hadn't even left my office.

I tried to call anybody that would answer. There was an automated talking lady on United. I think I got her brains mixed up and she started talking in circles. Frightening.

And then I realized it. There are PROFESSIONALS that do this type of stuff. The are called Travel Agents. In fact, I last used one when I booked a trip to Scotland. Some great friends told me about this woman that they've used for years!

I was telling Evan about the trip I was planning for myself and he casually said, I know somebody in Scotland who you can golf with. Really? Who is that?  He said, me and Erin. Wha-hoo!  And Elin booked the trip for us.

So I called Elin again hoping she was still in business (she was) and that she would remember me (she did)! I told her I'd like to see my family in New Zealand. Could she help me? And I told her my woes. She laughed. I laughed. I don't know what was so funny.

She got on the job right away. Elin called me when I was at a real estate property inspection, and thank goodness for smart phones. I had the info she needed while she had ANZ on hold. We were working on codes, and dates, and it was marvelous. She could talk to real people!

Here's the bottom line. I am going from SFO to LAX. Then non-stop to Auckland. Then a small hop to Christchurch. It is costing me 80K in miles. It is costing me less than a couple hundred bucks for some ticketing and a miniscule amount for her fee.

Mere mortals should not even attempt to do this. I was frazzled when I did it myself and I didn't go anywhere!

I've come to appreciate the specialty work that people excel at. And I realized my life is full of these special folks.

I don't hem my pants or take in a blouse. I can't futz around with a manicure or pedicure. I don't do my taxes. Six folks are coming over to tune up the roof tomorrow! I don't fix my toilet! That's what Ethan the Plumber is for!

I LOVE MY EXPERTS! Each one of them has a special place waiting for them in heaven...but I hope not too soon.

live richly, marilyn


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