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Every year something unexpected comes up. Sometimes it is fun stuff, but usually it’s a broken windshield, root canal or something even more unforeseen.

Last summer, I booked us a trip to the Canary Islands for February break. Tickets were affordable, and I was told by my friends in Europe that it was like their version of Mexico. A sunny escape from the wet and cold of Bordeaux! My vision was to spend four days lounging by the pool, relaxing and soaking in the sun. The total trip cost about $2,500, so it wasn’t cheap but sounded completely worth it.

We arrived without delays or any issues, and we got checked into the hotel by friendly staff and a chilled glass of cava. It was already evening, so we decided to explore the beach and have a nice dinner near the hotel. On the way home, it was windy and stayed windy all night. We could hear the wind whipping outside our hotel room and woke up in the morning to very strong winds. The hotel told us to stay in our rooms and not leave. All pools were closed. What?!

Of course we didn’t listen and decided to explore the nearby town and brave the winds. When we returned, the wind was still crazy and pools closed, but thankfully, I had already booked a spa appointment for the afternoon and they had indoor pools to enjoy.

When I got out of the spa, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Those high winds had blown in a sand storm or “calima” from the Sahara! Really?! You couldn’t see anything. The sky was yellow and visibility was negligible. It looked apocalyptic.

I heard the hotel manager say that they hoped it would pass and the pools would be open in a couple of days. Well, there went my relaxing sun soaked vacation.

To my happy surprise, the next day was clear and mostly sunny. Pools were still closed, so we hit the beach. We had a great time and were hopeful that the heated pools would be open the next day.

The hotel got mostly back to normal by our last day but at breakfast news came that another hotel in the town had been quarantined due to an Italian doctor who had stayed their previously and tested positive for the Coronavirus upon his return to Italy. Oh, sh-t! Guests at that hotel were being quarantined for 14 days. It may be sunny and poolside, but that is another $5,950 in costs.

Thankfully there was no quarantine at our hotel. We had a wonderful last day in the sun but I was certainly ready to get back on the plane and return to cold and wet Bordeaux. I feel like we dodged a bullet on this last trip, and I’m going to shore up my Emergency Fund by an extra $5,950 just in case!

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