I mentioned in a previous post that I once took a nosedive in front of a busy Starbucks in midtown Manhattan, but I neglected to tell you that I actually have a history of falling in just about every major city that I’ve visited. Since we really like to travel, and we make a goal of seeing at least three new cities every year, you can imagine I’m often kissing pavement. For entertainment purposes, I’ll recap a few of my finer moments for you.
Chicago, which is one of my favorite cities to visit at Christmas time, once saw me bellyflop right in the middle of the Magnificent Mile. Yes, folks, I was crossing the street right in front of Crate and Barrel when I stepped in a little pothole and pitched forward. Liam, who is always on a mission when he’s visiting a new city, didn’t realize that I’d fallen until he reached the other side of the crosswalk. With exasperation, he turned to where I was picking myself up out of the middle of the street, and waved impatiently. This was all while I was dodging the taxis who wanted me OUT OF THE WAY the moment the light turned green.
While in Savannah, we were taking some steps down an alleyway to the waterfront, and I was very carefully watching where I was going. There wasn’t a soul in sight, but I still didn’t want the pain of tumbling down a flight of steps. Then, out of nowhere, a large group of twenty-somethings appeared, flying up the steps at a very fast pace. I moved to get out of the way, and that’s when it happened. A speck of dust or a gust of air must have gotten underfoot, and I slipped and fell. My backside hit four stone steps before I came to a stop, red-faced and mortified at the feet of one of the guys in the group.
Again, in New York City, Liam and I were heading home after a day at work, and we were navigating the busy subway station. I started down the steps to catch our train, and it happened again. Water, an oil slick…who knows? Anyway, my foot hit it and I was off, bouncing down half a flight of stairs on my knees before I reached the bottom. Let me tell you, the people in New York City get a bad rap for being rude, because at least five people darted over to help me stand and gather my things, which I’d thrown all over the station during my tumble.
There have been a few other mishaps, like the one in Honolulu, where I accidentally dumped my soda on a surfer (I cannot make this stuff up) and then slipped in the puddle on the floor as I hurried to get him some napkins. Or the time my chair slipped out from under me in a restaurant in Louisville and dumped me unceremoniously into the floor. There was also the incident where I fell while trying to get out of a shopping cart on Barracks Street in Cork (you probably shouldn’t ask about that one).
I say all of this to say that I am finally victorious! Our Christmas trip this year was to Seattle, and I managed the entire trip – two days Seattle and one in Portland – without taking a tumble. This is an amazing feat for me, and probably some kind of record. I should also stop bragging about my sudden discovery of grace, because I’m sure I’ll more than make up for it the next time I visit a new city. To be honest, I’m glad I still have all my teeth, but I’m even more thankful for the incidents. What? That’s crazy! But it’s true. I love nothing more than to laugh at myself, and these trips have given me plenty of giggles. What these spectacular tumbles have also done is ensure that I never, ever, ever forget any of the traveling I’ve done, and that’s a gift.