My $10,000 Day in San Francisco

I left my money in San Francisco


I’ve sold travel insurance for years. 15 years to be exact. And I’ve never needed it….. until……

I’m at my annual work conference in San Francisco this week (actually I’m writing this post from my beautiful hotel room). It was amazing. 5 star all the way. Wined and dined at all the classiest iconic places in town. My 35-year-old body is fast realizing it’s not 18 anymore and 4 days of rich foods and wine start to kick in – like my credit card statement will kick in after this whole US/CND exchange rate fiasco – as I typically don’t eat or drink like that at home (I’m a pretty healthy girl for the most part!).

I get back to my hotel room at midnight. Can’t sleep. Think I have indigestion or food poisoning. Perhaps it was the shrimp. No, maybe the oysters. No, maybe the steak. Geez. The cheese platter? That last Gin & Tonic. (Honestly, we start at 5 pm and go till midnight – a lot happens in 7 hours of eating and drinking – for days straight) Then it hits me. Must have been the pork belly on that cute crouton with the yummy aioli sauce shaped like a heart…..

As I’m contemplating what foods I ate, I realize my pain is increasing and it’s like nothing I’ve felt before. Okay lies. It felt like the end stages of child labor – been there, got the T-Shirt!

So, with no sleep, at 5 am in excruciating pain, I call my Canadian travel insurance company’s phone number and ask them where I should go to seek medical attention. They give me the name and address and off I stumble down through the lobby, grab a taxi to the hospital emergency.

They were waiting for me at the California Pacific Medical Centre. They knew I was coming.  It was quite nice. Like checking into a hotel. (I have to say, minus my pain, they whole experience was rather quite enjoyable.)

8 hours later after a page long of pain medication I can’t pronounce, a CT scan, an ultrasound, blood work and all diagnostics completed, I was diagnosed with a gall bladder attack, which subsided hours later. Honestly, I was terrified that it was a heart attack, because symptoms for both are similar – thankful that it was not.  However, told to stay off fatty foods and on my way I went back to the hotel feeling a million times better.

And the happy part of the story is that they billed my emergency medical travel insurance directly and the only time I had to open my wallet was for my prescription medication, however they will be reimbursing me for that too.  (I could go on about private health care and what a wonderful experience it was, no queue and the customer service was amazing. Ohhh – I did have a hot Doctor too {Hi Dr. Dan 😉 } – that helps.  I felt like I was in my own episode of Grey’s Anatomy.  And I digress….)

I’m so happy that otherwise all the tests showed I’m in great health (huge blessing), feeling great, and reminding everyone who travels out of province and out of country to purchase travel insurance. It’s relatively inexpensive if you are under 65, however, all it takes is one tiny incident and you could be paying for it big time or cashing in investments you have worked hard to save up or remortgaging your home or worse.  I’ve heard all the horror stories over the years.

Funny enough, I’m staying at the hotel where Tony Bennett sang his famous song, “I left my heart in San Francisco.” I’m just glad I had travel insurance to cover this or I’d be singing, “I left my money in San Francisco.”



  • Tim September 29, 2015 at 9:06 am

    Hi Lisa,
    Thank goodness you’re ok! Why don’t you forget about financial planning and just become a writer?

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