If I have learned one thing about travelling, it's that it is often wildly unpredictable.
The things you worry about tend to be non-issues in the end and the things you don't worry about are typically what smack you in the face.
I have learned to be flexible and open minded.
But that doesn't mean that this never happens:
Yes, that's me in the middle of a major meltdown, which my husband captured on camera.
Travel has also taught me that it is a-okay to laugh at myself.
So let me backtrack and tell you the story of my meltdown on Queenstown's gondola.
Queenstown, New Zealand is right on Lake Wakatipu and and has a spectacular waterfront view of the Remarkables.
A gondola scales the hillside behind the city and affords visitors with spectacular views.
Naturally, we wanted to go. So we did.
On our last night in town, we took the gondola up the hillside to take a walk and snap some photos.
Everything was great... until we got on the gondola to go back down the hillside.
Suddenly, midway down the line, the smooth motion of the gondola stopped and we were motionless.
Thirty seconds later, we jarred forward a few feet.
Then, again, we inexplicably came to complete halt.
And we stayed that way.
Now, I have been on so many gondolas.
I've been on the gondola in Taipei multiple times.
I've been on the gondola in Hong Kong.
I've been on the gondola at Sun Moon Lake.
I've been on quite a few gondolas.
And none of them have ever randomly stopped for long periods of time.
None of them actually ever stopped, ever, even for a short period of time.
So there we were, dangling in the air, a huge cliff face right underneath us, and as the minutes and eventually hour ticked by, my imagination started to run wild.
The sky was darkening as it was well past 9pm.
Wind buffeted our two person gondola from side to side.
We noticed the small sign on the bottom of the door that read: in case of emergency, call such as such phone number.
We cursed ourselves for holding steadfast to our decision not to own cell phones.
Then, about one hour after being stalled mid-ride, we noticed a man wearing a reflective vest slowly hiking down the hillside with a megaphone in his hand.
Eventually, after yelling up to our friends who were stuck in the gondola behind us, the man made it to us.
My stomach dropped when he explained that they were experiencing technological difficulties and could not say when we would be freed.
Then, I started crying when he told us about the emergency blankets and glow sticks that we could find under our seats.
My greatest concerns?
Where was I going to go pee?
What if we had to spend the night?
WHAT IF ONE OF US HAD TO POO?
I mean, just before taking the gondola up, we had eaten Mexican food for dinner!
What can I say?
I am lucky this man loves me, the crazy lady who wrapped herself up in the emergency blanket and clutched the emergency glow stick until well over 90 minutes later when the gondola finally came back to life and deposited us at the foot of the hillside.
And you know what? We didn't even get a refund.
But I did keep that emergency glow stick.
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