Saturday, August 09, 2008

Best Laid Plans

My better half had an adventure. Yesterday morning at 10 A.M. the good wife, Sarah, and Sammy flew out of the Bridgeport airport. The trio is visiting our friend Sally in Plattsburg, New York. Their itinerary involved a short stop in Morgantown, arrive at Dulles in Washington D.C. (short lay over), and then off to Burlington, Vermont. Sarah had a car rented in Burlington so they could drive from the airport, take the ferry across Lake Champlain, and then to Sally’s house. They were to get into Vermont around 2:30 P.M. Sarah asked Mom’s help in traveling with Sammy (2 ½ years old) so Judy readily volunteered.

Since Judy was traveling, I headed to Spencer to visit Mom Meads and sister Judy. Judy fixed supper for us and brother-in-lay Bill fixed peach cobbler in his new iron Dutch oven.
We watched the great number of hummingbirds that came to the feeders on their porch. I had not heard from the travelers in the late afternoon, which I thought was a bit odd.

Here is their story. Upon arriving at the gate in D.C., there were only 2 seats on the plane left. Mom let Sammy and Sarah take this flight. She would have to wait until about 5 P.M. to get another flight to Burlington. Poor Sarah- no help with Sammy at this time Sarah’s plane was delayed because they had to change an oil filter. In the meantime, she is trying to change diapers (without benefit of water) and get Sammy settled. Sammy cried the last ½ hour of the flight because of the “ear effect” when the plane drops altitude. Sarah called me around 3:30 and said 66.66 % of the travelers had arrived. She was tired and discouraged. She had Sam, all the luggage, and now was planning to try to get everything into the rental car - and then hopefully meet Mom.

Judy is a wonderful lady and we have had so much fun and love in our marriage. There is a slight problem and it involves her orientation – I was worried! When we go to the mall where we have been a plethora of times, she forgets in which direction stores like Target are located. Judy is now alone in the D.C. airport. Her story continues.

She waited to board with her tickets and boarding pass. As she gets to the plane’s door, the ticket lady says that she was at the wrong gate and that she needs to go to another quickly. Yes, quickly since the other plane was leaving in 10 minutes! The other gate was located a far distance from where she was then. She hopped on a shuttle. When she asked if that shuttle was going to her new gate, the guy said “No, we are going to the terminal!” Judy flew off that shuttle and she found another that deposited her at the gate with 1 minute to spare. One problem – during the confusion, she has lost her boarding pass!

With a few prayers and a nice lady who helped, she was able to board the plane. She and one other passenger were the last ones on the plane. She was placed in a seat beside a young man who was a new Harvard business graduate and was going back home to Vermont to visit family. Judy said he was marvelous. Since they flew over New York City and he had lived there, he pointed out the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the rivers, etc. It was a great view of the city. Judy had no idea why the pilot came on the intercom and said they were 1000 gallons of fuel short. (He did not take up a collection, so guess that announcement was to add more drama to an already crazy situation.)

The lad in the seat beside Judy mentioned that this particular flight was late 70% of the time and 7% of the time it is cancelled and does not fly! He was correct. They were to get into Burlington at 6:39 P.M. and they actually arrived after 7:30 P.M. Poor Sarah and Sam waited at the airport for Mom from 3:30 until 7:30. I was called at 7:45 to tell me that all travelers were reunited. Hurray!

After eating and changing diapers, Judy, Sarah, and Sammy did not get onto the road until around 10 P.M. I was trying to watch the 2008 Olympic Opening Ceremony, but had the girls and Sammy firmly in my thoughts. I called about 11 P.M. The travelers were at that time on the ferry heading to Plattsburg. It had been 13 hours since they left Bridgeport. I told Judy that it takes us about 6 hours to fly from Pittsburg to Seattle, Washington! The excitement did stop there.

They had Sarah’s GPS system to help them find Sally’s house. It seems that either the GPS or the drivers were confused since they kept circling the peninsula. They were very clever to figure this out when they passed the same deer eating grass in a ditch on four separate occasions. Sarah hit a skunk – that was another marker which indicated that they were traveling in circles. Sarah did notice the “Watch Out For Moose” signs. That is all they needed to hit a moose! After 14 hours of traveling, they finally arrived at Sally’s around midnight!

Oh, the adventures, I am certain, will continue. I shall keep you informed.


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