Two Girls Turn 21 in New York City- Part 1

11 Jan

My story to share is a story that I have told many times.  I don’t really have a story that I’ve never shared.  Plus, I feel like if there is something I haven’t shared with some one then I have buried it so deep in my sub-conscience, that I can’t remember it anyways.  It would probably be depressing anyways.  This story, however, is interesting.My best friend, Ashley, always comes up with crazy ideas, so when she approached me with this idea I thought she was crazy.

At the time I was living in Panama City, FL and I was driving to Tampa to visit the family. The drive is 5 1/2 hours, so I stopped in Gainesville to visit with Ashley for a bit.  As soon as Ashley greets me she tells me that she has the “greatest idea ever”. Oh boy, I thought, this could get interesting.  She then proceeds to explain her plan.  Ashley wanted to go New York City for our 21st birthdays.  We are 2 weeks apart.  I’m May 7th and she is May 21st.  I thought she was crazy! It was the last week of April, my birthday was in a week and Ashley’s was 2 weeks later.  Not to mention, we were both broke.  Ashley said she would put the plane tickets on her credit card and we could figure out the rest later.  I told her if she could convince our parents and they all thought it was a good idea, I would go.  I really didn’t think it was going to happen.  Ashley sometimes gets so excited she forgets to come back to reality.

Fast forward to May 7th.  My birthday.  Since I left Gainesville, not a word was mentioned about NYC.  I figured Ashley just forgot about it and moved on.  Boy was I wrong.  As a surprise, Ashley was able to convince both sets of parents that NYC was the best idea ever. Mom and Dad gave me $300 toward our trip.  I was really excited. It was going to be epic.  Then everything changed.  It was 2 days after my birthday and my dad called telling me that my grandfather had passed away and my whole world fell apart.  I had to fly to Michigan for his memorial and I didn’t think I would be able to handle a trip to NYC a week later, but I did.  I knew I needed to get away.

Ashley had done all the preparation for our trip.  We were going to stay in a hostel because it was dirt cheap and like I said earlier we were broke. Ashley calls me in a tizzy 2 days before our trip asking if I still have a valid passport.  Apparently, to stay in a hostel in NYC you must have a passport. After 24 hours of searching, I found my passport, only to discover it was expired.  Which meant Ashley’s would be expired too. Uh, oh.  At this point we are about 16 hours away from boarding a plane to NYC with no place to stay.  We found out we could check our baggage long-term in Grand Central Station, after all, we were only going to be there for the weekend.  Who needs showers or sleep?  We were turning 21 in NYC, and we didn’t care as long as we were in NYC.

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