Let me just start by saying that any trip with me is almost always an adventure.
There was this trip back when I used to fly for work when I literally ran onto a plane as the doors were closing. The thing is that it was actually kind of my fault. But that’s for another time.
This time I did everything to make sure that there would be no hiccups. I packed the bag and had Jon bring it out to the car the night before. My (amazing) husband gassed up my car so I wouldn’t have to worry about stopping on the drive to the airport. I woke up with plenty of time to spare and skipped stopping for breakfast or coffee (especially since it was about 3 in the morning).
After showering, getting ready, (remembering my phone, camera, computer, wedding rings and toothbrush) and kissing my little family goodbye, I made it out the door at exactly the time I wanted to. My GPS said that I would arrive at the long-term parking lot at 5:30am, 15 minutes prior to our scheduled meet up time. Let me tell ya, I was patting myself on the back.
At 5:15am, just minutes away from the airport, I got a call from Gina that she was running a few minutes late and was already having a difficult morning. I told her not to worry and that we left plenty of time to spare. That’s when I saw the red lights.
Barely a mile ahead of me, just minutes before I was safely on the airport grounds, a tractor trailer got into an accident and ended up blocking every lane on the highway, baracading my path to the airport.
Considering the fact that I was only 10 minutes away from my destination, I wasn’t stressing it. Gina and I kept in touch and she avoided the accident and arrived at the parking lot just a few minutes after 5:45, our agreed-upon time of meet up. I sat in traffic, not moving an inch, watching police cars and ambulances arrive.
At 6am I began to worry a little. Gina and I made the call that she should head to the terminal and look up the next flights. I continued to sit still.
Around 6:20am Gina figured out the next 2 flight options and were literally holding our breath, waiting for things to move. It had been an hour since the accident happened and I was only about 4 cars back from the tractor trailer.
Let’s take a step back and talk about people and reactions to certain situations. My take is as follows; if something is happening and you have no control over and being upset or stressed out will not lead to a different outcome, I (usually) just don’t stress about it. I feel like the only person that it hurts is me. So why bother?
The man next to me in the mini van did not feel the same way. In the course of about a half hour I watched him pull forward, back up, pull forward, hit his wheel in obvious frustration, back up, pull forward again.
Side bar, did he feel better that he was “moving”? I wonder.
Back to the guy. After pulling up and back a bunch of times, he finally decided he was frustrated enough to jump out of his car, in his pajamas (this man was at least 40) (but to be fair it wasn’t even 7am yet), leaving his car door completely open, and walk toward the accident.
I laughed and texted Gina (hey, if I was going to sit here, I might as well find something to entertain myself).
Around 6:30am, right when we were about to give up and pay to reserve stand by on the 10am flight, I saw the man from the mini van running back to his car. Within a couple of minutes traffic began to move and I once again had hope of making it on to the flight.
The next few minutes are a complete blur as I bolted from the parking lot to the terminal and met up with Gina, checked my bag, bolted to the gate, went through security, (wiped the sweat off my forehead), and made it to the plane gate just in the knick of time.
Moral of the story? Stop for coffee. You’re probably going to be late anyways.
ps- check out Gina’s post yesterday to learn how coffee, marriage, and her cell phone rank on her priority list.