We Did Know the Way to San Jose!
Day 3 of our journey from Podunk to San Jose, California, started in Truckee, CA with a sickening gasp. Her Royal Highness gulped oxygen as she appeared to be looking at her phone. I immediately jumped to the conclusion that she had just received a text informing her that the bridge we needed to cross into the San Jose part of the Bay Area had just collapsed in an 8.8 earthquake, rendering passage impossible and serious carnage inevitable.
“Oh my god, oh my god,” HRH muttered and pressed the palms of her hands to her forehead.
“I forgot my warmups!”
HRH’s team, the Bigsky Wildcats, had made it to the National Hockey Championships, and her official team jogging suit was hanging in her closet back in Podunk.
“Whew!” I responded, presumably without compassion.
“You do not understand — this is, this is almost as bad as forgetting my jerseys!”
Because I am mature, I held back the urge to ask her if she did indeed bring her jerseys. Also, Iron Chef was quick to ask, “You have your skates, right?”
More hand pressing to forehead.
To be clear, in the weeks that preceded our family’s insane cross-country travels in pursuit of hockey, Iron Chef and I made several attempts to prompt Her Royal Highness to engage in equipment checks.
Her eyes let us know we were donkeys for suggesting such a thing; donkeys whose old-school checklists were not only around at the time of the wooly mammoth, but probably also caused the species to go extinct.
And now, she was attempting to show up at the ice rink without the Wildcats emblem specially embroidered on her sweat pants.
As we drove from Truckee to San Jose, I suggested she call a nearby sporting goods store to see if they had something passable.
She seemed amenable to the idea and called the Sports Authority. “Hi! Like, do you have any black warm ups with like, a 1.5 inch red stripe down the sides? Oh really, well thanks anyway.”
Meanwhile, we were coming to a complete stop on the freeway about an hour out of San Jose. Although we were parked on the highway with hundreds of other cars for only a few minutes, the clock was ticking on our quest to a) find custom Wildcats sweats, and b) reach our hotel in time for the first of many team meetings. And our decision to use Homer Simpson’s voice as the narrator for our GPS system was also being called into question.
Now this felt more like a road trip!
The good news is the kind people at the Sports Authority outfitted Her Royal Highness with a passable substitute for the forgotten warmups, just in time for us to arrive at our hotel and hear the announcement that based on the sunny California weather, the team was going to abandon the beloved warmups in favor of shorts and their new tourney T-shirts.
In the words of our friend and guide Homer Simpson, “Doh!”