Emotional Baggage Claim

bagsHappy Super Bowl Sunday!

We’re all prepped for the occasion with some festive food ideas I got from Pinterest.

There’s the football-shaped bread bowls for chili, the multi-Mex dip platter sectioned like a football field complete with pretzel stick uprights in the guacamole end zones surrounded by the pulled pork sliders stacked stadium, and the layered Jello shot dessert cups color-coordinated by team!

Yeah right.

We break out the air popper and use real butter and sea salt on the popcorn, just to make it special.

We’re not that into the game, but last week we did get to visit the Super Bowl host city in sunny AZ. We were in Phoenix for non-football related reasons, but it was fun to soak up some sun and pre-game spirit. Plus we managed to score a small but important victory while there.

Upon arrival at PHX, my husband’s suitcase was missing. We filed a report and left the airport hopeful, kinda. Luck isn’t usually a lady for us, but we thought there wasn’t much to lose in his bag really—a couple shirts from Cal Ranch and a toothbrush. We later received a phone call from the airline explaining they’d found the bag, but apparently it had been dragged down the runway beneath a luggage cart. My husband had to go back to the airport to assess the damage.

He returned to the hotel with a nice new replacement suitcase and a reimbursement check for some damaged clothes and boots, which amount was probably more than we spent on the clearance rack wardrobe.

Score!

But there’s a kicker, and not the football kind.

Of course, the item that sustained the most damage was the one valuable thing in the bag: a custom sterling silver belt buckle created by a master craftsman and awarded to my husband for a prestigious achievement. The airline clerk was skeptical about the value my husband claimed for it. She sent him away telling him he’d have to provide proof of value before she’d issue any reimbursement. She probably thought he was bluffing, that the buckle was a cheap Wall Drug trinket and this wannabe cowboy would take his meager profit and git. But we weren’t going to take it in the shorts.

Not this time.

We’re unlucky people. We cheer for losing teams. We invest in “sure deals” that go bust. We wreck all our vehicles in a 3-car pileup in our own driveway. We own the one suitcase that rolls off the cart and damages the most valuable accessory my husband owns and hardly ever takes anywhere. We’re the capital “M” in Murphy’s Law, but we were in Super Bowl city and this time we were determined to be winners!

We tracked down the silver smith (thanks, Google). He verified the value to the surprised clerk and she cut us a check. We did a victory dance all the way to the hotel then celebrated with our spoils at a self-serve fro-yo place in a quaint touristy location, which was priced by ounce about the same as sterling silver.

The Super Bowl isn’t really a big deal for us because we already won in Phoenix. But if the Seahawks lose, you’ll know our lucky streak is over.

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