Trouble Comes in Threes

Flying into Reno…

My mother always told me that trouble comes in threes, and the older I get the more that superstition seems to ring true. As I wrote in my last post, I’m in Reno, Nevada, on a site visit as part of my duties with the International Clarinet Association, after three days in Denver visiting properties. While there have been some really great and exciting things about this trip, some of it has been downright roll-your-eyes ridiculous in the you-have-to-be-kidding-me-? way.

The trip even got off to a rocky start:

1) My limo was sideswiped just a block from the hotel the evening I arrived in Denver.

Oh, my…

2) My toilet in the third hotel in three days had a meltdown before I’d even used it and I came back to find it sitting on a cart in the bedroom. Seriously?

…And then there was No. 3…

One of the bars at the Peppermill.

For our last site visit, my colleague, the President of the ICA, and I stayed at the beautiful Peppermill Resort in Reno, the location of ClarinetFest 2020®️, here to nail down some details for the conference next summer. The evening we arrived, my colleague told me he was not feeling well and would probably go to urgent care in the morning if things didn’t improve. I told him I’d be happy to go with him.

Peppermill hallway…

The next morning I received a text saying that my colleague had taken an Uber to Urgent Care, as his temperature had risen to over 103 degrees, his heart rate was high, and his blood pressure low. A flu swab came back negative. We continued to write as things progressed until he told me they were sending him to the ER…and then the texts stopped. I asked him where he was- nothing. I began to panic.

The Peppermill’s wonderfully decadent theme…

I contacted my colleagues on the Board to let them know what was going on. My best friend in Nebraska helped me track down a close hospital and we both called to find he was not there. I went to the concierge and found out that the closest ER was Renown, so I called an Uber and headed over, worried sick. No luck, and the gentleman looking up the information couldn’t find him anywhere on his computer. My heart sank. Right as I was leaving, he called to me, checking with another desk. It turns out that there are not one but three Renown hospitals in Reno. He located my colleague and I quickly called another Uber. I was starting to feel like Nancy Drew.

Venetian tile throughout the Peppermill.

I finally made it to the correct ER to find Mitch in a hallway bed. He looked awful, a black knit cap pulled low over his eyes, a hospital mask over his face, and eyes that looked full of fever. He was so surprised when he realized it was me, weakly asking, “How did you find me?” Nurses we’re buzzing around, checking his vitals and giving him fluids.

We waited several hours for the results of the tests they’d run. My colleague looked so fragile, and I did my best to stay positive and not look as worried as I felt. We alternated between chatting and letting him rest to pass the time, as I updated friends. I was just so glad that I had found him and he wasn’t alone in a strange city dealing with this. I would have been so scared.

Taking precautions…

Finally, they took one more flu swab just to make sure the last test hadn’t been a false negative; sure enough, Mitch had a nasty strain of Influenza B. We were actually jubilant, as we both thought the diagnosis would be much scarier. Once he was finally released, we had an Uber take us to the drugstore to get his Tamiflu and plenty of liquids, then got him settled in his room to wait out the misery of the flu.


I have sort of felt like a bad luck penny this week, but hoping after three strikes the trouble will take a break. Poor Mitch is staying at the hotel to recuperate before flying home. I fly to Birmingham and home early in the morning. After this very full week, it seems like I’ve been away for a month, and I’m anxious to be with my little family. I so hope that Mitch heals quickly and well…and I really hope that Old Trouble is ready for a holiday. ‘Nuf’s enough.

Maybe next summer…

2 thoughts on “Trouble Comes in Threes

  1. Wow. I’m sure glad you were able to find him! I’d have been double miserable if I’d been admitted to a hospital without a diagnosis or a friendly face. You have a good heart. I’m sure the trouble is over – because you deserve a break!

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