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When Carol was twelve, she made a road trip with her older sister and her four kids. Somewhere in Missouri they looked back at the trailer that housed her sister’s dog Heidi, and didn’t see her. With a happier ending than a similar event in National Lampoon’s Vacation, the Crisfield clan hung a U-ee and found Heidi bounding along the highway, her leash that she’d used to somehow manage to open the door to the trailer bouncing behind. The original trip planned to Alaska had to be abandoned in British Columbia, when that same trailer busted an axle on the Alaskan highway. I’m happy to report Heidi was safe, though covered in leftover coleslaw that had spilled out of the fridge when the axle broke. A Native American guide fixed the axle and let Carol’s niece ride his horse during the repair, adding, “when you’re done, just get off; he’ll find his way home.”
Carol tried to tap into my recently acquired travel expertise by asking about currency exchange. “When you use your credit card, do you pay in dollars or euros?” I thought it both an astute and practical question. Unfortunately, I had no clue which method was more sound monetarily. “I choose dollars, but I don’t know why,” I replied with an incurious shrug. Carol hasn’t realized it yet – or maybe she has – but she is the resident expert on practical matters for this trip.