Enjoying the 1987 John Hughes classic Trains, Planes and Automobiles is a tradition in my house on Thanksgiving week. Uptight Neal Page (Steve Martin) is trying to get home to Chicago in time for Thanksgiving. The worst happens when his flight is rerouted to Kansas and he is forced to travel with chatty shower curtain salesman, Del Griffith (John Candy). Things go from bad to worse after the duo is robbed while sharing an awkward (but funny) night in a motel.
I belly laugh during this movie every year! Having spent over fifteen years traveling for work, I recognize both characters from my own experiences. If I’m being honest, I relate with control freak Neal. I’ve learned to travel light. The more stuff you bring, the more stuff you must carry through airports. BUT – I think all of us would like to be a little more like Del. He has a jovial charm and a kind heart.
So which kind of Holiday Traveler are you?
Your suitcase and belongings are:
A – Minimal, tidy, and individually wrapped like string cheese
B – Thrown into your bag like last week’s laundry
During the flight to your holiday destination, you:
A – Put your headphones on, lean back and pretend to be asleep like an antisocial hermit
B – Wake up headphones hermit and ask him all about his life whilst you are eating the sandwich you bought at the airport
After One Night’s Stay, your Hotel/ Motel Room looks like:
A – Nobody slept in the bed or unpacked their things. Housekeeping wonders if you’re a spy
B – A crime scene! All your stuff is scattered across every square inch of flat surface
If you chose mostly “A’s” then you are a Neal Page. Welcome to the Club, friend!
If you chose mostly “B’s” then you are a Del Griffith. I may not want to travel with you, but I want to be your friend!
If you ended up with an even “A” and “B” result, then Gobble, Gobble. Take it again because something went wrong!