I’m a pretty funny person.
No, I don’t mean that in an arrogant way. I mean I laugh at the things I get myself into.
I do funny things, most of the time not on purpose. Sometimes, I’m clumsy. Ok. Ok. All the time I’m clumsy. I don’t even just fall DOWN the stairs, I fall up them. And break fingers. Multiple times. I leave pots in the sink and come back ten minutes later to the kitchen flooded. If someone’s going to do something silly/stupid, it’s probably going to be me.
On extra special occasions, I live on an island and manage to miss the last boat back to said island when visiting friends on the mainland.
This past summer, I was living in Martha’s Vineyard in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. I had friends staying on the mainland cape so I decided to go visit them for the day. The Hy-Line ferry conveniently goes directly to Hyannis, but only a few trips each day. I caught a nice and early boat and was ready to enjoy a fun filled day off the island or in Amuuuurica as I like to call it. My plan was to get the last boat back that evening at 8pm to get back in time to see the fireworks in Oak Bluffs marking the end of summer!
A wonderful day was had and my friends dropped me off back at the boat with plenty of time to spare.
I purchased my ticket, and settled into the line marked ‘Martha’s Vineyard Here’.
I’d had a couple glasses of prosecco with our dinner of $1 oysters but was perfectly capable of boarding a boat when it arrived! I settled in to reading a book assuming I would just follow the crowd around me when it was time to board.
At 8:05 I happened to peek my head up because it was weird that the boat was late. It’s never late. Hmmmm.
There happened to be a boat backing out of the dock at that very moment. Enter fear. Maybe it’s the Nantucket boat though…
I glanced at the ticket in the woman’s hand next to me…. Hyannis to…. NANTUCKET!
SHIT! OBSENITY! OBSENITY!
I got up and ran to the guy who looked like he was running the dock operation and tried to remain calm.
“Please don’t tell me that was the last boat to Martha’s Vineyard?”
“Yeah, that was definitely the last boat. We called it 6 times.”
“No, I’m really not. That’s it until 8:15am tomorrow.”
I missed the last boat back.
This would have been no problem had I not needed to work at 10am the next day and had my friends not been staying over a half hour away.
I probably could have showered them with love and affection and they would have came and got me, put me up for the night and brought me back early the next morning. But I would have been stressing about making it back in time for work the entire time.
So, you ask, what did I do?
I ran back in to the ticket counter and begged for a refund. I swallowed my pride and admitted that I missed it because I wasn’t paying attention. The sales lady took pity and issued me the refund.
Then I raced out to the parking lot and asked a taxi driver how much it would cost to take me to Wood’s Hole to catch the last steamship back to Martha’s Vineyard. Mind you, it’s an hour drive from Hyannis to Wood’s Hole and the last boat left at 9:45 and it was 8:30 at this point. That didn’t leave a lot of time to waste.
As luck would have it I found the cowboy of all the taxi drivers and he was certainly up for the challenge. We negotiated a set price instead of risking the meter.
He said he felt like he was in a James Bond movie and enjoyed the thrill of the race against time. Oh boy, what did I get myself into.
This wouldn’t be even that great of a story if it weren’t for this taxi driver. He had an air of serial killer to him mixed with a bit of dexter while still being seemingly harmless.
He yapped about how much he hated Uber and how all it was good for was for drivers to find girls to rape.
Then, he told me how he ‘found’ the car we were in in a garage of one of his regulars who died. Uhhhhh.
Well, moral of the story is I made it to the ACTUAL last boat of the night. Only spent about 2 extra hours and $40 extra dollars. AND I missed the fireworks. But I made it back.
And I’ll always have the story to tell.
Have you ever missed your boat/bus/train/plane? What’d you do? How’d you handle it?