What doesn’t kill.

Today begins leg one of the Mary Jones European Travel Adventure. My mom and I have never traveled alone together and we´re both excited for what lies ahead. There´s no way for us to know that in a little over one hour, my mom will utter these words: “Sometimes it takes an experience like this to fully appreciate the joy of traveling with a man who has severe OCD.” Her chin will quiver slightly as she says this.

But we can´t know about that now, as we giddily begin our walk to the metro, where we´ll soon board a train to the Barcelona airport. We won´t really anticipate it when we have trouble using the ticketing kiosk at Sants Estacio just minutes before our train departs. Nor is it blatantly obvious when we board – and then unboard – the wrong train, avoiding a near fatal mistake in terms of our weekend itinerary by just a few seconds.  But as we arrive at airport Terminal 1 and have to board a commuter bus to reach Terminal 2 where our flight is departing, I think it hits her.

“What doesn´t kill you…” I say.

I feel slightly vindicated when we end up waiting more than half an hour for boarding to begin. When I score seats on the emergency row, she seems to consider forgiveness.

Still, something seems slightly different about her. For the next two days, at the mere mention of my father, I swear I think I see her chin quiver.