Monthly Round-Up: Rose & Thorns – March 2023

March Rose & Thorns – A monthly recap of the highs and lows experienced each month.

Rose: Solo Trip Success

I conquered a significant travel fear that had been looming over me for over a year. I successfully flew to a destination, rented a car, and didn’t end up in a ditch. For some, this might seem like the most ridiculous fear for someone who actively writes about travel and takes herself on solo trips. The anxiety centers around driving an unfamiliar car in an unfamiliar place. This fear was only heightened by the weather forecasting snow during the entire trip. 

You may wonder, “Karissa, you’ve gone on solo road trips before and flown around the country without a problem; how is this different?” I’m glad you asked. We have to acknowledge fear is not rational. When I told my friends about this trip, they didn’t get it either. Like any good friend, I was met with positive reassurance that I would be fine, and ultimately, the trip couldn’t have gone smoother (this post would have fallen in the “thorn” category if I was writing this from the side of a mountain awaiting to be rescued). In past trips, I had the comfort blanket of my personal vehicle or the reassurance of a friend or family member on the other side of my destination. Too many variables and an unfamiliar highway made my hands sweaty from the moment I rolled off the rental car lot until I parked at my Airbnb. 

I may have driven an hour and a half with the passenger-side rearview mirror tucked in because I was too afraid to pull off the side of the highway, and my hands were glued to the steering wheel at 10 and 2, but I made it! By the end of my trip, I felt so proud for pushing myself to take my travels to the next step, like I’d unlocked a new level of the travel game. Everyone has different travel anxieties (or anxieties in general), but I promise once you push yourself into those uncomfortable situations, you will realize your brain was lying to you. You are capable of anything. The real fear should be the fear of missing out because you allowed your thoughts to hold you back. 

So get out there, buy airplane tickets, book the dream Airbnb, rent the car, and see the world! 

Thorn: Non-Rev Fail

Before I get into the details of my failure, let’s discuss what is non-revving. Non-rev is short for nonrevenue travel. Airline staff and their companions can use this benefit to fill an empty seat on a flight. People non-revving still have to pay taxes and fees, but these amounts are usually less than $80 for a round-trip flight. At first, this sounds great. However, there are some risks, and travelers must be flexible with their travel dates and times. If the flight is overbooked, meaning no open seats are available, you could be stuck at the airport waiting for another flight. It goes without saying attempting to non-rev during the holidays or on busy travel days can be almost impossible. 

If you can pack light, travel during the off-season, and have flexibility in your destination, non-rev travel can be delightful. This was the plan for a trip to Philadelphia this month. My friend and I had the best 48-hour trip planned, and I was finally going to be able to fly on the flight she was piloting. I had a short but tight itinerary filled with hiking, a few touristy attractions, and a restaurant we couldn’t visit during our last trip. 

The aircraft we were supposed to fly on was parked in the distance for what we thought would be a quick maintenance repair. The delayed notifications started slowly with a one-hour delay and then built into two and three-hour delays. By the time I decided to throw in the towel, I had sat at the airport for ten hours, staring at our airplane, trying to move it with my mind. Not only was I not going to Philadelphia, but I wasn’t going to make it as a superhero with my Telekinesis powers. 

My dreams of becoming the next Avenger were extinguished, but my future vacation plans were on fire. If I couldn’t go on this trip, we might as well use our time wisely and start planning for the next. 


Rose: Victory in the War on Smoking

Cigarette smoke has been filling my condo for months, making me fill like a prisoner in my home. If you have followed along for the past two months (see R&T January and February), you know I’ve been at war with my downstairs neighbor over smoking on the patio. I’m pleased to report I no longer have a downstairs neighbor. 

Before you jump to conclusions, no, I did not murder them, and no, they didn’t die of a smoking-related stroke. They simply moved out. I didn’t realize they were gone until I received a text from the landlord telling me, “I got my wish”; their tenant was gone. Fingers crossed, the next tenant is a sweet old lady who loves to bake. 

March Favorites

Amazon Crop Top – clothing from Amazon can be hit or miss. I took a gamble on purchasing THIS top for an outdoor event, and I loved it so much that I bought it in another color. 

Cakes Body – I love these so much it’s worth mentioning twice. Things I will not be wearing this summer are pants and bras. With Cakes Body, I no longer need to worry about my bra situation for those strappy summer tops. I have worn Cakes Body every time I wear a tank top. The Amazon top mentioned above is not padded, but I didn’t have to worry because I knew my Cakes would have me covered (literally). If you want a non-sticky seamless nipple cover, these are an absolute must-have for the summer’s strappy top dilemma. For 10% off your order, use code: Allthingskarissa at checkout.

March Blog Post Recap

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