Sunday, January 30, 2005

Material Girl

In the early 80’s my Mother’s youngest sister developed breast cancer. My Aunt lives over seas. My Mom was ready to move heaven and earth to be able to be with her sister in her time of need. It’s what sisters do.

It took a few weeks for my Mom to get all the details settled to be able to leave us and help out her sister. The typical things one must do to go over seas; ticket purchase, passport details, prescriptions for a few months, money, making sure Dad will be taken care of - you get the idea. As you can imagine all these plans were a bit harried due to the circumstances. The family here was concerned for Mom being that she has hypertension and doesn’t handle medical crises all that well. My Mom is a worrier; to the point of making herself sick. It’s not something she can control; it’s simply part of her make up.

So the day finally came and we sent Mom on her way. As luck would have it a friend of hers was also making the trip so at least she would have a travel buddy. Their itinerary was to leave BWI airport, fly to JFK International with a 3 hour layover then board their flight to Germany, switch planes there to the final destination.

I returned home later that evening to find my Father pacing irritatingly and my younger sister (Bridezilla) hysterically crying. My first internal thought was my God the plane crashed. I swallowed the lump in my throat and asked what was wrong? My Father informed me that while waiting in the transit lounge at JFK, my Mom was robbed. It was the classic bait and switch her purse was taken. The contents of the purse included her identification, passport, and her medication for 3 months, her ticket, and money - everything she needed to make the trip. I also found out that due to her determination and the fact that she had received her boarding pass prior to the robbery she had persuaded her way onto the plane. My Mom was flying over seas with no way of proving her identity except for the police report from JFK.
My Father’s fear was the unknown. What would happen to his wife once she tried to board the flight in Germany and how was her health - was her blood pressure sky rocketing at this point between her sister’s illness and the robbery. Thus the irritated pacing. So I turned to Bridezilla and asked what her problem was? Why the histrionics? She was upset because some of Mom’s jewelry was in the purse as well. WHAT?!?!?!

What you might need to know is that Bridezilla has a running inventory of all of my Mom’s baubles. I am not kidding. She has them listed with weight of gold, carat of gem, etc. The only piece of jewelry I could tell you about is Mom’s plain wedding band. These are not details I am bothered with. So the crying was over her list being altered in some way. Not the fact that Mom could possibly stroke out during the trip or maybe be detained in a foreign country or worse.

While I was on the phone with immigration officials and the embassy of my Mom’s final destination, Bridezilla was begging Dad to go to the bank as soon as it opened the morning so he could give her an inventory of the items that remained in the safe deposit box. Believe it or not, he did do that the next morning.

After hours of phone calls, I found out that if my Mom was allowed to board the plane in Germany and if she was able to get off the plane at the final destination, they would depose her and all would be well. She would then have to go about getting all her ID replaced. If they refused to let her board the plane in Germany, she would be placed on the next flight back to the USA and according tot he rules it would have been as if she never left the country.

We did have a multiple happy ending to this event. Mom made it to her sister safely and Bridezilla’s inventory list was only minimally affected. Crisis averted!


HotForSimon said...

I can be there in six hours to smack bridezilla.


I can.

Wicked H said...

Snort! Well if we had known each other 20 years ago, you would have been the first one I'd contacted.

Thanks HFS!

Anonymous said...

I call seconds on Bridezilla. She sounds a lot like my ex-wife's sister whom I affectionately refer to as "The Pig". When I met The Pig's boyfriend, I initially thought he was a great guy...until I realized the he slept with The Pig...voluntarily. From then on, I just couldn't shake his hand. Lord knows where it had been.


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