I would like to take some time to apologize to the state of Florida. Now, you may be wondering why, especially since I’ve never even been to Florida. However, after several weeks of debate, my husband and I decided to vacation if Florida this year and therein lies the problem (those of you in the western states should thank me now). See, whenever we travel places together, bad things seem to happen. Usually after we’ve been there, sometimes while we’re there, and at least once (maybe twice, depending on how you want to look at it) shortly before we arrived.
Here’s a list of the incidents I can remember (if anyone remembers any others, please let me know--they've gotten hard to track):
We went to Death Valley/Las Vegas in the spring of 2004, and Death Valley experienced severe flooding that August.
Another trip we took to Las Vegas, the Bellagio caught fire, literally the night after we left.
We went to Pennsylvania for my sister’s college graduation, and most of the east coast got hit by a nasty ice storm (which we drove through to get there) and then it was bitterly cold the entire time we were in PA.
Our first trip to Kure Beach, the area got hit by a tropical storm (Barry, I believe). (Note: This one may actually be my sister’s fault-she claims that bad weather seems to follow her.) (Additional note: I don’t ever want to be in the beach house during a tropical storm again.)
We drove through Sedona which experienced forest fires within the week.
We went to Reno which then experienced a week of record high temperatures. (We were there for the first part of this and enjoyed it immensely. Bring on the dry heat!) (Note: If you are not a good flyer, do NOT go to Reno by plane. The turbulence flying in and out of there is unreal!)
We went to San Francisco/Sunnyvale/Berkeley and an earthquake hit (3.6 or 3.7) just outside Oakland. (I slept through it.) (Note: Again, this may not be our fault--we were in California and earthquakes happen all the time.)
We took a trip to New Orleans in July of 2005, and we were actually scheduled to go back for Labor Day weekend. Well, we all know what happened there. Needless to say, the return trip was canceled. (I’m not sure if it was the trip made or the trip planned that was the tipping factor for this one. Maybe the combination punch.)
And last year, just a month to the day before our trip to Utah to visit the National Parks out there, including Arches National Park, Wall Arch collapsed.
Now, in all fairness to us, we have taken trips to places that have suffered no ill effects. Our trip to Mammoth Caverns resulted in no cave collapses or sink holes. We went to Laughlin, NV which suffered no ill effects (although some might contend that Laughlin is already suffering enough so our bad luck makes no difference). We have gone back to Kure Beach a couple of times, and also went to Hilton Head. They haven’t been washed out to sea yet. We’ve been to Ohio a couple of time with no bad mojo (see Laughlin comment, though). Okefenokee Swamp is still fine (the fires that happened there were way too long after out visit for those to be our fault).
So, Florida, I’m sorry. Within days of making the decision to go to Florida, the previously dead silent tropical season suddenly became very active. The only consolation may be that there is a very high chance that we will get to experience whatever happens to your fine state firsthand—either while we’re there or when it hits us too after we get back.