You’ve probably heard the old adage about assuming.  I thought I’d share a funny story where I assumed too much.

It was balmy that day, probably 80 degrees, in South Florida.  My wife and I calmly worked through our travel plans for Thanksgiving.  We’d stay in Westchester County for a few nights, then to Brooklyn to visit my son.  Flights booked, lodging booked.  No problem.

A month later, after we first arrived in New York, something happened that we should have realized would be a bellwether for our stay here.  After a few hours at the hotel – a light dinner and a glass of wine – we returned to our room to retire.  Not 5 minutes after we returned, we heard the fire alarm go off in the hallway.

Must be a false alarm, we agreed, but evacuated as instructed.

Over the next 2 hours, we pieced together what was confirmed the next day – a candle-lighting at a wedding in the hotel went wrong, and the ballroom caught fire.  Those 2 hours were darn cold.

See, the first thing we somehow assumed is that it would be as warm in NY as it was in West Palm Beach.  Intellectually, we knew it would be almost winter, but somehow, in the comfort zone of our mind, it wouldn’t really be that cold.

Fast-forward a couple of days.  We were set to head down to Brooklyn.  Sitting in the restaurant for brunch, we saw the first flakes of snow coming down.  A glance at the weather radar showed us a glimpse of the future – there was a very heavy storm on its way.  Earlier forecasts didn’t show it being that bad, but Old Man Winter was having his way.

Some last-minute finagling, and we cancelled our Brooklyn lodging for something much closer.  (Yes, we lost most of the money from that Brooklyn reservation…)

Our new digs for the next couple of days were very nice!  A wonderful, old inn with spacious rooms.  But here’s where assumptions come in again.  We assumed that, being a bit off the beaten path, the hotel restaurants (two of them) would be open often enough for our needs.

After a restful first night, we realize that nothing was open on site until 5 pm!  (And we had enjoyed an early dinner the night before…)

We fasted most of the day, with a small lunch from a vending machine, and decided to take a ride share out to a tavern we had eaten at a few days prior.  Another assumption: These places would stay open regardless of the weather.  They don’t.  Turns out our nice tavern wouldn’t open, and neither would the restaurant next door.  We walked 15 minutes in below-freezing snowy weather down the main street, trying to find an open restaurant.  Nothing.

Another ride share back, and we stuck it out until 5pm to enjoy our only meal for the day.

Now, I have to say we had a wonderful dinner, after all of that.

The lesson in all this?  Hmmm.  Let’s not get caught up in lessons, or science, or anything like that.  We all assume in some situations.  Things go right, things go wrong.  The best we can do is plan as best as we can, enjoy the adventure, and make the best of what happens.