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Travel Mishaps When Life Gives you Lemons…

I’ve been happily planning our family’s next big trip and I’m pretty excited about it! After a year of dreaming, pinning, reading blogs, and saving some instagood ideas I’ve finally booked my flights and accommodations!  We’ll be heading to London for two weeks over the Christmas holidays, a dream come true!

Now that our flights are booked, its time to narrow down, prioritize and finalize some of those fun ideas I’ve been thinking about all year. I’ve been booking tickets and tours, researching day trips, and making plans… secure in the knowledge that even with the most careful and organized planning I won’t get to do all of it… something will go wrong.

Yes, you read that right. Something will go wrong, something always does! The key is knowing that even though I don’t know what that something is or when it will present itself we make the best of it when it does.

As the saying goes:

“When life hands you lemons, you make lemonade.”

The boys and I put together this list of travel mishaps, most of which we now laugh about. Have you ever had a travel mishap? Were you able to make lemonade, or were the lemons just too sour?

Lost In Tempura

Life’s given you lemons when you think your dinner check will be on the very reasonable side but actually ends up costing as much as all the other meals on the entire trip combined! Whoops, we made a mistake with the conversion from yen to dollars…

That said…

Our meal was fantastic, in fact it was hands down the best meal we had the entire trip! Tempura in Japan was incredible and nothing like anything we’d in the States. The batter was light as air, the house made sauce was divine, and we learned a new way to enjoy tempura, a squeeze of lemon and a pinch of salt. It had been the perfect way to end what we all considered the vacation of a lifetime!

Want to read more about that incredible dinner or about our other Japanese adventures? Check out these related posts:

Japan! Adventures in Cuisine!
Japan! Tokyo… No Wasabi Kudasai!
Japan! Planes, Trains & Automobiles!

Last Chance for Gas

Life’s given you lemons when you’re driving a diesel car, but you put gas in the tank. Whoops! Having never driven a diesel it was news to us that American diesel cars and pump nozzles have different shapes preventing such a mistake from happening,

That said…

Not having a car meant cancelling our trip to the Dingle Peninsula, which although disappointing, turned out to be more than okay as we spent a lovely day wandering in the Killarney National Park. Located just across the road from downtown Killarney and about one block from our hotel it was just steps away. No car needed! The weather was somewhat unpredictable, but the boys loved walking into the wind and rain! The park path twisted and turned through forest and meadow and at the end a castle!


Want to read more about our adventures in Killarney National Park or about our other Irish adventures? Check out these related posts:

Ireland! 50 Shades of Green!
Ireland! Along the way… Cork!
Ireland! Three Days in Dublin!

High Wind Advisory

Life’s given you lemons when you’ve traveled half way around the world to see the famous Benagil Sea Cave (listed as one of the world’s most beautiful places), and high winds, during the entire visit, prevent you from ever reaching the cave, which is only accessible by boat.

That said…

We ended up at the Praia da Marinha, listed by the Michelin Guide as one of the ten most beautiful beaches in Europe and as one of the one hundred most beautiful beaches in the world! The entire time we were there I kept thinking how amazing it was and that this couldn’t be real! The high winds and surf prevented swimming, but we relaxed on the sand, dipped our toes in the water and took many photos.

To read more about our visit to the Praia da Marinha or about our other Portuguese adventures check out these related posts:

The Algarve! Pinch Me! Is This real? 
Portugal! DETOUR… To The End Of The World!
Portugal! Beautiful Lisbon!

Every Cloud has a Silver Lining 

Life’s given you lemons when your night sky photo tour of Monument Valley is foiled when an unexpected storm complete with rain, wind, thunder and lightening suddenly blows in.

That said…

Even with the heavy rain keeping us indoors, we spent an enjoyable evening in our little cabin and got some great sunrise photos instead.

To read more about our visit to Monument Valley or the successful night sky photo tour in Bryce Canyon check out these related blog post:

Soaring Over Monument Valley
Exploring Bryce Canyon National Park Day & Night

Just Be Nice

Life’s given you lemons when fellow tourists behave badly. Our visit to the Las Vegas Neon Museum would have been perfect, but for the rude behavior of another guest. His strange and threatening attitude put everyone on edge, including the guide.

That said…

We loved seeing the signs, and learning about the history of Sin City. The museum staff were kind and even refunded our admission.

To read more about our visit to The Neon Museum, and our other adventures in Las Vegas check out these related blog posts:

Las Vegas The Neon Museum
Las Vegas: Beyond the Strip
8 Things to do in Las Vegas… with Kids

Planes, Trains & Automobiles

Life’s given you lemons when your kid throws up before during, or after a plane flight. My little one has thrown up in just about every airport, plane, or taxi from Paris to Rome, and everywhere in between. If there’s anywhere he hasn’t thrown up my older one took his place.  Whoops, there went the retainer!

That said…

There’s nothing like a little throw up to speed up the check in process.

To read more about… ha ha! Okay, maybe you don’t want to read more about that, but here are some fun and thankfully unrelated posts:

Much Ado about Paris!
Roma! La Città Eterna!

Sour Lemons

Sometimes it’s just not possible to make lemonade no matter how much sugar you add to those sour lemons…


Life’s given you sour lemons when you go to load up the car after a fun weekend in Santa Barbara, and find it crawling with thousands of ants! I’m not sure anything could have prepared us for that! Four hours and a through cleaning later, we set off for home. Needless to say the ride wasn’t our most relaxing.

Related post: Santa Barbara!

Food Poisoning 

Life’s given you sour lemons when your toddler falls ill with salmonella on the flight home from Hawaii and instead of heading to your house from the airport you head to the doctor.

What’s The Matter?

Life’s given you sour lemons when one day after you arrive for your vacation you fall ill with a rare and difficult to diagnose virus. Spending your vacation in the hotel room instead of out exploring, now that’s just rotten!

New Orleans! Lets Eat Lunch & Talk About Dinner!

Even though things don’t always turn out as planned, I’ll still take the occasional lemons if it means we get to have lemonade in the end!

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