Annie Dear: Teeth gritted, we head westward

The Examiner

As you read this, Sir and I will be over-sunning ourselves in the high desert in California, there to visit with the most fabulous aunt, Boston Lil.

Annie Dear

I say over-sunning, as while we will have an abundance of absolutely glorious temperatures here – in the blissful 70s or even less – we will be grinning and bearing it in the triple-digit department. I know, I know, there’s low humidity, but come on now. Hot is – well, quite frankly – hot. I don’t “do” hot. I don’t like to sweat, perspire or even glow.  However, that’s where Boston Lil chooses to be, and even if she lived in the middle of Whereoneartharewe in Alaska in February, we would happily visit her there too, so fabulous is she.

We were supposed to make this trip back in March – but we all remember March, don’t we? The best laid plans of mice, men, and Sir and me came to a crashing Covid-halt, so as I write this, I’m hoping there are no new shutdowns or quarantines leveled by the governor of California before we leave, or by the governor of Missouri for our return. We might be forever left at the airport – oh heaven forbid.

Deciding not to take our usual itinerary of flying into San Diego and facing a two-hour, late-night drive back into the desert, I will confess Sir worked his urging magic and found extremely reasonable flights way back then to go to Palm Springs instead – and thankfully the fare didn’t do anything silly in the meantime.

Prior to all this craziness around us these days, I was a very ho-hum traveler. Just get me there and I’m a happy camper. Now, with more enforced hermit-ness and being thoroughly used to being in a crowd of a maximum of four, I must confess to having just a tiny bit of trepidation.

I would like to warn all travelers that I’m not long in the patience department. If you’re planning on having a temper tantrum (or chucking a wobbly, as we would say in Oz) because the airline insists you wear a mask, then my flight is not for you. Come to think about it – no flight is for you, as all airlines are pretty adamant about it, so suck it up, brothers and sisters. Comply, and we’ll all get along famously.  Without anyone in the middle seat, one can only hope.

If you want to protest something – anything – stay off my flight. I don’t want anyone in my face, up my nose, or causing mayhem. We have enough mayhem, so keep it to yourselves.

I see restaurants in California are only allowing takeout or outside dining. Dining outside in 118 degrees, I must confess, does not fill me with the joys of spring, but I guess it would keep the crowds down by that virtue alone, so maybe I can be prepared to glow after all.

So wish us luck as you wave us goodbye. Cheerio. Here we go on our way. I will have a nice evening of slides for you when we get back.

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at