Here we are, 2010. It feels so strange. On one hand I’m so very glad to be rid of 2009, but somehow don’t exactly feel ready for 2010. But I’m trying to hold on to the hope that seems to spring from the start of a new year. The reminder of new mercies, new opportunities, new stories around the bend.
One of those stories for me this year is probably going to center around my upcoming trip to Italy. I blogged about how it came about a few months ago, but I’m finally starting to feel like it’s really going to happen. Partly that’s because I finally booked my plane ticket – and that’s where the old goal comes in.
One of the longstanding items on my life goal list has been to fly first class on a trans-Atlantic flight. I’m not sure why, but ever since I started making trips overseas it always seemed like such a wonderful and glamorous thing to spend a flight across the ocean in the comforts of first class. It seems like a silly and superficial thing when I say it out loud, but something I’ve wanted to do nonetheless.
When I realized that I might just have enough frequent flier miles to fly first class to Italy I was pretty excited. I put off booking until I had some down time on vacation this week and quickly realized that the upcoming changes to the entire reward program meant that I was now on a short deadline. Due to the number of miles needed and limited first class availability, I came very close to booking a Business Class flight instead. But I chose to think it over a bit more before I emptied my entire mileage account I’d been saving for years. The more I thought about it, the more I realized how much I’d regret not taking that extra step to reach the goal I’d set years ago. So, on New Year’s Eve, amidst prepping for and partaking in the evening festivities with friends in a city 600 miles from home I utilized the power of the BlackBerry and the graciousness of my friend to book the ticket that I really wanted in the first place.
I will spare you the details, but between downed service centers and web pages that weren’t cooperating it was somehow a little more stressful than it seemed like it should be. But in the end, I now have a first class ticket direct to Rome. That’s right, direct. No stops, no layovers. I will have a bed that lies flat and a window to view Rome as we land in the morning. And the cherry on top is that I was able to use frequent flier miles and credit card rewards to pay for everything except for a few fees and taxes. I know it’s now New Year’s Day, but I feel like a little girl on Christmas morning who just opened a pretty amazing gift and can’t wait to experience every bit of it.
I also chose to spend a couple of days in Rome on my own before coming home. I’ve always wanted to see Rome and can’t wait to pretend I’m Audrey Hepburn for a couple of days, enjoying my very own Roman Holiday.