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  • Kate Forest


My dad is turning 80 this year and we are taking him to Port St Lucie to see his New York Mets in spring training. He’s never been, despite it being on his bucket list for years. I congratulate myself on coordinating flights from three separate cities and a rental car so we’ll all arrive at the hotel at the approximately same time.

I purchased tickets in the covered section so we won’t be baked under the Florida sun.

Realistic image of my father in Florida

And our hotel has beach access for when there aren’t games. I’m praying for a breakfast buffet, because if my family has to order breakfast ala carte, you’ll hear the eye rolling back in Manhattan.

Rarely do my parents accept the first room they are offered at a hotel. Here are some reasons for their requests to change room: too close to the elevator (this has resulted in being reassigned to a room so far from the elevator that my mother’s Fitbit exploded), not on a floor high enough above the noise (Even though they live in Manhattan across the street from the 24th Police Precinct and the Ladder 76 and Engine 22 Fire Battalion. For years, the message on their answering machine had sirens in the background.), and in one the bathroom door opened "funny."

How my parents see the first hotel room they are shown.

In general, they are good travelers. They are always willing to go off the beaten path, as long as it’s paved. They don’t need 5-star restaurants, but there better be decent appetizers on the menu. And they’re up for almost any cultural sight, once even visiting the Weights and Measures Museum in Paris. (Surprisingly, there was no line for the museum)

This is the actual kilogram. The one that defines what a kilogram it. I just saved you a trip to that museum.

They frequently find the lighter side of travel mishaps which makes traveling with my parents a laugh riot. One time we even walked into the middle of an actual riot in Mexico City. This didn’t phase them, even as we crossed paths with the policia in riot gear.

I anticipate having a great time in Florida if we can keep my mom from reading a book during the ballgames and convince them to sit at the first table we’re shown at the restaurants.

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