It’s about 115 degrees and I’m sobbing in the car while a hairdryer, set on its hottest setting, blows heat directly into my face. At least, that’s what it feels like. The window of the car is open, but the air is so hot it feels like I’m standing too close to a bonfire. It’s suffocating, burning, life ending heat. And as the lights of Vegas come into view, my sobs only grow louder.
“We’re almost there,” David, my future husband, says through gritted teeth, sweat pouring down his face as he stomps on the gas, hurdling us towards our salvation.
“I know, but I can’t breathe,” I gasp. I feel like I might explode.
David swings up to our Vegas hotel entrance like he’s Ryan Gosling in Drive, picking up criminals after a heist, tires squeaking. I’m hyperventilating, overheated, and my face is so red that I look like a cartoon character who just ate a hot pepper, steam literally coming out of my ears. David gestures at the front door.
“Go in,” he says.
“But our bags,” I sob pathetically.
“I’ll GET THEM. JUST GO IN,” he yells. And I do. Because we are one step away from breaking up forever and never speaking again.
The minute the cool air of the lobby hits me, I feel instant relief. I grab a glass of cucumber water and swallow it in one desperate gulp. Then sink into a chair. Hotel check in can happen when I’m sure I’m not going to have a heat stroke. As my mind slowly begins to cool down, I begin to feel more like myself. I am not going to die on this trip. Not today at least.
Our air conditioning had blown about an hour and a half outside of the city. Later, we’d find out that the tubes had burned through (I don’t know what tubes. What am I, a mechanic?). It happened conveniently in the middle of the dessert, during summer. It was not pleasant.