Holiday Travel ~ Lacy J Williams

I know you’ve sat next to them before on an airplane, bus, train or other form of public transportation. Maybe you’ve been one of them.

The person with WAY TOO MUCH LUGGAGE.

I’ll admit that I’ve been one of them a couple of times when traveling to see my husband’s family over the Christmas holiday. We were transporting gifts along with enough clothes to last us a week—of course we had too much for the overhead bins in the airplane. Not to mention the pain of juggling that stuff all throughout the airport, especially when your terminal is the farthest away from the passenger pickup area.

When doing research for my December 2012 novel, COUNTERFEIT COWBOY, I found that the travelers in the “good old days” (the story takes place in 1890) had many of the same complaints we have when traveling now: uncomfortable seats, too crowded, journey takes too long. And that person next to you brought WAY TO MUCH LUGGAGE. Here’s an excerpt from one of the research books I used when writing this book:

At Port Jervis a most voluble old lady entered the car bringing with her an extraordinary assortment of luggage. She had two bandboxes, a dog, a flower pot, an umbrella, a jug of milk, a lunch basket, a parcel of figs and a boy of fifteen whose age she gave at the ticket-office as nine. I heard her tell her nearest neighbor of the fact and she chuckled over it as if she had performed a most virtuous action. (a real quote from a historical passenger from The Railroad Passenger Car by August Mencken )

Sound familiar? I’ve been blessed that my husband’s family moved much closer and now we don’t have to travel to see them on holidays. Which is a very good thing, because now with two small children, it seems our luggage has quadrupled since it was just my husband and I by ourselves… but that’s another story.

I’d love to hear your stories of holiday travel—what has been the most interesting thing to happen to you? The passenger who annoyed you the whole way to your destination? Anyone who shares a comment will be entered to win one of two copies of COUNTERFEIT COWBOY.

Here’s the back cover blurb:

A con man with a conscience…

From the moment Jesse Baker collides with Erin O’Grady on a Boston train platform, he faces a dilemma. For once, Jesse doesn’t want to lie about who and what he is. Yet if she learns he’s a con artist, not a cowboy—and the urchin with him is certainly not his brother—she’ll never give him a chance.

Erin suspects there’s more to the enigmatic cowboy than meets the eye. But the sheltered socialite is certain his deep compassion is real. On the long Christmastime train ride to Wyoming, hearts and courage are tested and true motives revealed. And the journey than began in a charade may end with redemption—and a very real love.

 

Lacy’s bio:

By day, Lacy Williams is a stay-at-home mom battling dirty diapers and dog-hair dust-bunnies. By night, she is a novelist with two books nominated for RT Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Awards (2011 and 2012). Her current projects include more books for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Historical line (cowboys!) and a screenplay.

Guest Blogger
Updated: November 27, 2012 — 3:30 pm

21 Comments

  1. I would be the person with way too much luggage. I just can’t seem to pare down. Since we mostly drive to where we are going it isn’t always a problem but I always wonder when we get home why I took so many outfits! I couldn’t possibley wear them all.

    I like the blurb of your book and am looking forward to reading it.

  2. Hi Lacy! Welcome to Petticoats & Pistols! I have so many travel stories I don’t know where to start. The worst was probably the trip from Wash DC to Lexington KY where my hubby had food poisoning. That poor man! We made it without incident, but our luggage didn’t arrive until midnight on Christmas Eve.

    I’ve run for more than a few tight connections: Phoenix, Chicago, Atlanta. That rule about allowing 45 minutes between flights? No way. I want 90 minutes, especially in a big airport.

    Then there was kid who kept kicking my seat…grrr!

    All in all, though, I’m amazed at how easy it is to get on a plane and fly across this magnificent land. The window seat is my favorite just so I can look down and appreciate the moment.

  3. I don’t travel anymore during the holidays. I used when I was younger and in my first marriage. The only annoying person I traveled with was the first husband.

  4. I’m another non-flyer at holiday times… I was always the one who got stuck in a middle seat with 2 large people on either side and the whiney kicking kid behind me.
    Once, my mom & I were flying and due to late planes and weather issues, we were on a different flight than scheduled… so she got put into FIRST CLASS!!! I was back in the economy seat [you know the ones that are like sitting in the backseat of a VW Bug?]… She came back and promptly started telling me about her dinner & wine… etc.. If she’d not been my mom, I would have shoved her down the next available flight of stairs!

  5. the worse plane ride was over 3 hrs of a screaming baby right behind me,,no sleep,no reading,talk about a headache,,it was awful

  6. Lacy, welcome to P&P! It’s great to have you. Glad you could make some time for us. Holiday travel is usually a nightmare. At least that’s been my experience. One time I was trying to get to my Mom’s for Christmas (it was three days before the big day) and it took me four hours to get through Dallas. Traffic was bumper to bumper and I desperately needed to go to the little girl’s room. I never wanted to do that again. After that I looked for an alternate route around Dallas. I didn’t care how much it was out of the way.

    Love the title and cover of your new book! The guy on the cover looks like a younger version of John Travolta. He’s really handsome. Dark haired men draw me. There’s something about them. Wishing you lots of success.

  7. I never travel unless I absolutely must.

  8. Oh you have openned up a can of worms now.. I can’t tell you how many times I get the passengers from hell.. Whether I am travleing by plane, train or bus..> But like I tell eveyone you just have to suck it up and hope you get to your destination without having to murder someone…

    The worst I think was the time a family was on the plane and they let their kids loose.. OMG I could not take it anymore and made a comment to the parents, they told me to get my priorities in order. I told them I did, that they should. The airline hostess practically hugged me to death when I got off the plane, because they could not tell the parents the same thing. Then on the plane ride home, I got the Idiot, who thought the weather and the hours of delay was the airlines fault. I told the guy to get a life and get some brain cells.

  9. For the holidays, we used to drive 3 hours to go see my grandparents… since they have been gone, I have not traveled much after moving. Gee I think it has been over 10 yrs since I even went on a plane… just a few car trips.

  10. Welcome, Lacy. Love your cover. REALLY love the blurb. What a fun premise!!! I con man with a conscience. I love him already. 😉

    We travel a lot and have learned one of the best days to travel by airline is the actual holiday. Seriously. Less lines, more cheer. I always feel sorry for the flight attendants, ticket agents, pilots, etc. What a rotten day to work. We always leave huge tips that day. It’s only fair, right?

  11. We don’t travel too much any more. But when we did it was never too far. With a pickup we could take anything we wanted. Our biggest trip would have been to Nevada. But that was only 5 hours for us. However, when it was snowing it made us take the alternate route across the desert to avoid Mammoth.
    Haven’t been on a plane since 1999 to Hawaii. That actually was pleasant, except for not moving for all that time.
    Welcome to P&P. It’s nice to see a new face.

  12. That’s one yummy cowboy cover, Lacy! And a fun blog. I avoid traveling on holidays, and when I do travel by air I limit myself to a carry on. Hate checking baggage, especially when it gets lost.
    I’m always amazed in the Western movies where the woman gets off the stage with this little trunk and then she has this whole big wardrobe to wear in the rest of the film.

  13. I’m not much of a traveler. The last holiday trip that we took was around Christmas time three years ago. We were traveling up north to spend the holidays with family and I remember the weather on the way was horrible and we arrived late because of the slow traveling. We had a great time though when we finally arrived.

  14. We used to travel to Colorado to ski during the holidays. Some trips were snowy and ice packed roads but usually made it.

  15. Laughed out loud at the quote from the Railroad Passenger Car! 🙂 I generally have no problem chatting with people when traveling but last Christmas, after not sleeping the night before, I got on a flight where I sat next to a man who wanted to talk the entire flight – my neck got quite a crick in it :). It got to where I had to tell him I was still listening but that I was going to face forward as my neck was hurting! LOL 🙂 I tried going to the restroom thinking when I got back to the seat maybe he wouldn’t continue chatting, nope! I guess he needed to talk! Love the title of your book! Thanks for the giveaway!

  16. Sorry to be late to the party, ya’ll. had my daughter’s 3 year birthday party today–whose idea was it to have a December baby??? 🙂 kidding, we love her.

    I’ve been on both sides of the travel thing, sometimes with too much luggage and sometimes next to the annoying guy who wants to talk too much. But it was always worth it to see family on the holidays.

    Thanks for hosting me! I always have fun visiting P&P!

  17. Holiday travel for us was at Thanksgiving. Flying from Washington State to New York State the end of November is always an adventure thanks to the weather that no one knows what it will be ’til it happens. It means you have to pack boots and other cold weather gear you may never use but more than once I was glad we had packed them. I always feel sorry for the airline employees who have to put up with the passengers who complain about the delays when it’s obviously out of their control.

  18. Love the cover of your book. I do love me some cowboys. The only time we travel for the holidays is at Christmas and we just drive to my sister’s house on Christmas Eve. She lives about an hour away but I don’t like driving at night. There has been a few times it was snowing when we left and I didn’t like that at all. So I am always happy when we don’t have a white Christmas.

  19. Loved the post, Lacy! I don’t travel much at the holidays although when I do, it’s always by car. I did travel from my home in Oregon to my son’s house in Philadelphia recently though and was amazed at how much luggage people brought on the plane with them! What they think is “carry on” amazes me! Then they try to stuff it in the overhead compartment and get upset when it doesn’t fit! One person I sat next to couldn’t fit something underneath the seat and was actually trying to put it partially in my section! Good thing I’m so easy going 🙂 I’ve traveled all over the world and I do have many interesting stories and it would take too long! Your new book looks fantastic! Can’t wait to read it!

  20. The first year my husband was stationed at Andrews AFB outside Washington, DC, we planned to go to his mother’s for Thanksgiving. She lived in Orlando, so we knew the traffic would be bad. What we soon learned was what a disaster a bit of snow was to driving in the DC area. We had no idea what a mess the roads become and how poorly most people dove on them. To be fair, it was a snow storm that dropped several inches on the area. Soon there was a layer of ice under the still falling snow. People would try to go faster and just slide sideways. People were leaving their cars in the middle of the exit ramps and road, not even bothering to get to the side and pull off. It took us over 6 hours to go about 15 miles. We made good time after getting down the road a bit, but we slid on an overpass and decided it was time to call it a night after going less than 100 miles. Fin ding a hotel was fun.

    We learned later that we could have taken a back road from the subdivision where we lived and avoided the whole beltway and I-95 interchange mess. We would have avoided the hour plus it took just to get the 4 miles to the beltway. The roads weren’t too bad yet and the back road to I-95 wouldn’t have been too bad or heavily traveled.

    We try not to travel at the holidays. This year I flew home the day before Thanksgiving (not a holiday trip, but coming back from NYC with the Red Cross). Except for overbooking the flight, it wasn’t too bad. That was untilI got my suitcase. I had a brand new rolling suitcase that had the zipper blown out (I’m lucky I didn’t loose anything out of it) and the bag was smeared with food or something. I will say the airline fixed the bag and I already have it back.

    Good luck with COUNTERFEIT COWBOY. It sounds like it will be a good read.
    Enjoy your holidays and safe traveling.

  21. Thanks for all the comments, everyone. I enjoyed writing my historical version of a holiday travel trip, but would love to write something contemporary someday–lots of options for conflict with travelers going crazy and weather, etc. We’ll see. 🙂
    Happy holidays, ya’ll!

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