Ken is a retired entrepreneur. He is married with two adult children and nine grandchildren. He loves traveling and any beach that has sand.
Planning for our trip to Miami
Several years ago, I won a company-sponsored, all-expenses-paid trip (except for food and booze) to the wonderful city of Miami, Florida. The company paid for the plane tickets for two, along with hotel accommodations for the three-night stay.
During the planning for the trip, my wife, Sue, thought it would be a good idea to invite a family friend, Debi, to go on the trip with us. Debi would have to pay for the airplane ticket, but she could stay in the spacious hotel room with us, on a spare bed included with the room.
Debi had recently lost her husband, Ron, to sarcoidosis, and was glad for the invitation. She accepted it without hesitation. She needed to get out of the house and remove herself from all the memories it held. She thought of it as a healing, cleansing trip that would help her move on with her new "life after Ron."
As she was only in her 50s, Debi had her future staring right in front of her. She was a Real Estate Agent and always enjoyed traveling to places she had never been. It was no surprise, then, when she said yes. She and Sue started planning out the things they wanted to do while they were in Miami. As the apparent "odd man out," I let them do their thing, figuring I'd get in some sightseeing and maybe get a chance to visit one or two of the local horserace tracks in the area.
As a horseracing enthusiast, I had seen the beauty of both tracks on television on many occasions over the years, so I was finally going to get a chance to visit them and maybe place a bet or two while I was there.
Do not trust the escalators in Miami's airport
All three of us were excited when the day came for us to board the plane. We arrived at our airport early enough to breeze through security and get to our gate. It was a brief ten-minute wait until we boarded our plane for our direct flight to Miami.
Once we landed, there were attendants who directed us to the correct baggage claim area. My clothing for the 3-day trip fit snugly into a carry-on bag, so we only had to pick up two large suitcases, one for each of the ladies.
Having watched Sue pack her clothes, I knew from past traveling experiences that she would pack everything and anything she could possibly need on this trip, which meant her suitcase was sure to be heavy. Being attuned to each other's likes and needs, Debi's bag would surely match Sue's, pound-for-pound. Needless to say, she didn't disappoint.
After retrieving our luggage, we proceeded to an escalator, where we would board a bus for a trip to our hotel. Sue and Debi were walking ahead of me as I towed their suitcases behind me. They were just yakking away at each other, excited to finally be in Miami.
As they hopped onto the escalator, they never missed a word in their conversation with one another. Bus, as I stepped onto the escalator, one piece of the luggage didn't quite make it, which tightened my grip on the handle. Suddenly, my entire body was pulled head-over-heels backward.
I released my hold of all the luggage at the same time as I tumbled backward a second time. I could feel the escalator's treads scraping my back as I tried to regain my balance. On my third tumble backward, the escalator was finally brought to a halt by one of the attendants, who then rushed to help me right myself. Once I had my balance, he restarted the escalator for the rest of the trip to the top.
Sue and Debi saw what happened as I was tumbling the second time, and tried to check my back, which now was burning because of all the scrapes and scratches on it. I lifted my shirt for them and the entirety of my back had tread mark scrapes. Luckily, there was very little bleeding, so I sat on one of the suitcases to catch my breath. That didn't last long, however, because our bus was waiting for us to get on board so it could get us to the hotel.
We hope you enjoyed your trip; see you in the fall
The trip to the hotel was calm, save for those seated around me who had also witnessed my accident. They were checking on me to make sure I was okay. Assuring them I was fine, I tried to slough it off as no big deal, trying to save myself from any more embarrassment.
No other accidents happened during our three-day stay, thankfully. I tried to go for a swim in the ocean, but the salt water stung my scrapes and made me rethink my desire to swim.
Sue and Debi enjoyed themselves and went downtown to do a little shopping. I asked them to go without me so I could just lay around and rest at the outdoor pool without having to move too much. My back pain would finally ease on the last day of our trip. During the rest of the trip, it was pretty painful to walk very far.
Naturally, I'm disappointed I didn't get to visit Gulfstream or Hialeah. As a horseracing aficionado, I have watched many important races being run at those tracks. It would have been neat to actually walk the grounds and get the atmosphere of the place so that I can put it in my memory. But, since it wasn't to be, I have now added two more visits to my bucket list. I will get there yet!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Ken Kayse
Liz Westwood from UK on October 11, 2021:
I was sorry to read of your accident. You have written a good account of it. I had a relative once who tripped on her first evening in Florida. She ended up in hospital with a fractured pelvis and in a wheelchair going around the Disney park.