It’s a Bloody Good Thing I Have a Sense of Humor

What a crazy day.  My dad always said that our family had luck…it just wasn’t GOOD luck.  I have to say I agree.  I’ve had a few very bizarre things happen (like a diesel semi bottoming out in my front yard and causing a hazmat situation…things like that), and most of my friends think I have a black cloud.  I personally wouldn’t say black.  But I’d definitely say grey!

Yesterday was a long day.  Because R slept in our room after her ER visit, neither D nor I got any sleep.  R woke up at 7am, so I was up by 702 when she was squirming around.  I couldn’t be upset though, because as soon as I opened my eyes, she was beaming up at me.  So we crawled out of bed quietly to let D get some more sleep, and we went downstairs.  I’m not feeling well at this point, but still not sure if it’s because I’m coming down with something or because I’m exhausted.

So I made coffee and then R requested waffles.  Can’t say no after her ordeal, so I made a batch of home made waffles.  To be fully honest, she asked for pancakes first.  I said sure, I’d make some.  She asked if they “were the kind that was already made in the freezer”.  I said no, I’d make them from scratch.  That’s when she changed to waffles.  I’m thinking that was an insult to my pancakes, but I’m not sure…

I made a mixed breakfast for me.  I boiled 1 oz of brown rice pasta and threw in some frozen mixed veg of cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots.  Then I used some left over lentil chowder and then the acorn squash alfredo.  The combination was very, very good.

I finally woke D up just after 10 because I had some errands to run and I needed to pack.  I was home after an hour or so, and started cleaning and packing.  The rest of the day was fairly uneventful, though we did get R a desk for her room (which made her feel very grown up).  I tried going to bed early, and managed finally around 1030.

I woke up at 7 this morning, had some coffee and some Ezekiel bread toasted with sunflower seed butter, and then the adventure began.  D got me to the airport on time, and I checked in with no issues.  Yeah Norfolk.  My flight was on time, and I landed in Atlanta exactly as planned.  Woo hoo.  So far so good! My travel companion was an odd man who made lots of noises with his mouth, but otherwise it was pretty calm.  My flight was supposed to leave at 1250pm for FL.  That gave me a little over an hour to get to my gate, go to the bathroom, call my family, and catch up on Twitter.  Here is where things went downhill.  Fast. 

The plane broke.  No kidding…broke.  They announce that they’re working on it and our new departure time was 130pm.  Okay.  No biggie.  I packed snacks (awesome seeded crackers, smoked tofu, a pint of blueberries, and multi grain puffed cracker things), so I was okay to wait a bit more.  I’m never confident when I travel that I’ll be able to find healthy vegan options in the airports.

I sat there reading twitter and my kindle, snacked on all the blueberries, a couple crackers and some tofu, and was okay.  Then there’s an announcement that they found us a new plane, and we’d have to switch gates and our new departure time was 220pm.  Plenty of time to hit the bathroom, pick up some water, and still board.  Cool.  Long day, but okay.  I wasn’t feeling too terrible at all – just the chest tightness and occasional coughing of green, but I was no infecto lady!  220 comes and goes.  No plane.  They announce it’s now going to depart at 250.  Okay, that’ll get me to FL by 5.  Not 2 like planned, and I was going to skip driving into Orlando, but that was okay.  There’s always tomorrow.

At 230 the new plane landed, and I started to think I’d actually get out of Atlanta.  Of course with looking out the window for the plane to arrive, I couldn’t help but notice that it was snowing.  In Georgia.  Oh Lord, this can’t be good. 

By 245pm, Delta had us boarding our plane.  There were a lot of people grumbling, but I was still in a surprisingly cheerful mood.  No sense getting worked up over anything I can’t control, right?  It’s a tiny plane and I’m not thrilled, but I got to my aisle seat and settled in.  And we waited.  And waited.  Around 315, the pilot comes out to tell us that the reason for the delay is that none of our bags are on board (they were on previous flights that somehow made it out of Atlanta without us), and they were making sure they were all accounted for before we left the gate.  Okay cool.  I appreciate that – would hate to have my luggage go missing.  Been there, done that.  Of course they have to re-distribute the weight on the plane since there are no bags, and one person did have to move from the front to the back.  How scary is it that one 220 lb man made the difference in the plane’s ability to fly??

At least through all this, they left the cabin door open so we could all still use our electronic devices.  So I’m texting with friends, updating facebook and twitter, and reading my Kindle.  By now, pretty much everyone on the plane is complaining quite loudly.  I think that was as bad as the delays really.  Whining isn’t going to fix anything. 

After another 15-20 minutes, the pilot comes on and explains that the plane needs to be de iced.  Of course this is Atlanta, and they don’t have the resources to do this the way Chicago or New York would.  So here we are – in the busiest airport in the country – and all the planes have to line up to be de iced but a very limited number of de icing trucks.  He tells us that we’re 8th in line to push back from the gate, and then 15th in line to de ice.  Ugh.

We push back from the gate, go a few feet, make a u turn, go a few more feet, and then stop.  And we’re stopped for a good 15 minutes or so.  I decide I’m a bit hungry, and get up to get my snacks from the compartment above my head.  As soon as I stand up, one of the flight attendants comes sprinting up to me, telling me that the fasten seat belt light is on and I cannot get up.  I apologized, and explained I didn’t think it mattered because we weren’t moving.  She wasn’t nice, but gave me my bag so I could get my stuff.  I decide that angering the flight attendant wouldn’t be wise.  Besides, she’s getting enough lip from angry passengers.  It’s not her fault, so why make it worse?

Well, apparently not everyone felt as I did.  A large man at the rear of the plane got up, apparently to use the bathroom (which the lady behind me said was REALLY gross…I’m thinking it wasn’t cleaned between the previous flight and ours).  The attendant told him that he had to sit down, that it was a safety rule since the plane was technically in motion (since we’d left the gate, but really weren’t moving).  He started yelling.  She started yelling.  And all hell was going to break loose.  She told him that if he didn’t sit down, that she was going to tell the captain.  Of course he yells to her “Fine.  Go tell him!”.  She stomps away, informs the captain, and then gets on the loudspeaker….and very rudely…starts telling everyone that they can’t get up, that she’s not going to be held liable for someone falling and getting hurt, and that these rules are for our safety.  And if we don’t like it, we can go back to the gate.  And oh by the way…if we go back to remove unruly passengers, we’re not leaving Atlanta today because they’re shutting the airport down”.  Here I am wishing I had thought to use my iPhone and film her to post on You-Tube!  She wasn’t wrong, but she was nasty about it, which was really unnecessary.

So after waiting, and de icing, and waiting some more, we were finally airborne at 520pm.  Joy.  Nearly 3 hrs stuck on a plane that wasn’t going anywhere, after spending 3 hrs in the airport waiting to go.  Long Day.

The only highlight was the conversation with the gentleman sitting next to me (who’s name I didn’t get).  We somehow started talking about running, and he told me that his wife ran marathons and did triathlons – and that she just did Ironman!  It was really neat listening to him explain how she manages to train, work, and take care of a family – which is always something I’m worried about being able to juggle.  She’ll run at 4am, get the kids up and off to school, bike 50 miles, and then go to work.  Get the kids, make dinner, and sometimes workout in the evenings too!  It was very inspiring and I could tell he was very proud of her.  He let me know that where I’m at in FL has a lot of running stores, so as long as I’m not feeling bad, I’m going to try and hook up with a group run while I’m here.  We talked a bit about blogging, facebook, and twitter, and it was funny trying to explain why anyone would want to read things like this that a complete stranger writes.  I told him that facebook was great for communicating with people you know…and twitter is great for meeting people you don’t.  For me, I find Twitter fun because I get to “meet” people who are like me.  I don’t know a single other vegan in my family or friends circle.  So it’s neat to communicate with people who are.  Anyway, I’m rambling again, sorry.

I finally get off the plane, get my rental car, and my luggage, and headed out.  I got to my hotel, checked in (it’s about 730 now), and decided I’d like a light dinner and a glass of wine.  Yeah.  No luck.  The lounge is closed on Sunday’s and no room service either.  Ugh.  I get to my room, and am prepping to head out for a bite.  I’m sitting in my hotel room and here a chirping noise.  A minute later, I hear it again.  Lovely – the smoke detector battery is dying.  I call the front desk, and they switch my room, so I haul all my luggage back to the lobby to get my new hotel room key, and off I go.  I will take pictures tomorrow, but my room is simply hideous.  It was probably cool in the 80’s. It has a tacky Egyptian theme.  Half the walls are black, the other gold.  There are papyrus paintings hanging everywhere, and sphinx masks on the walls.  It’s pretty comical.

Anyway, I headed out to a walmart up the road.  I needed to get some fruit for the morning, and some wine for tonight.  I stopped at an Asian restaurant and grabbed a dinner of steamed vegetables and tofu.  I think I’ve eaten more tofu in the past 15 hrs than I have in the past 2 weeks!

After getting back to my room, I hopped on the web cam to see D and the kids before bed, took a shower, and decided I needed to blog while my adventures were fresh in my mind.  So there ya go.  Lesson of the day?  Don’t travel with me.

I leave you with a quick list of do’s and don’t’s of travel (based on my day today):

1.  DO shower the morning before your flight.
2.  DON’T wear perfume or cologne.  In a tight space, it’s awful.
3.  DO wear freshly laundered clothes and jackets.  Nothing like sitting next to someone who’s jacked still smells like last year’s dumpster dive
4.  DO stay in your seat, and your seat alone.  You may be tall or wide…but you did not buy the seat your neighbor occupies.  Suck it in, suck it up, and stay in your space.
5.  DO be nice.  Nothing good comes from being otherwise.
6.  DON’T fidget.  Smacking your lips, twitching your leg, whisteling, etc….always upsets your travel mate.  It’s annoying.
7.  DO NOT bring smelly snacks.  That’s also gross.
8.  DO NOT fight your way onto the plane.  It’s not going to leave without you – no sense pushing your way and cutting people off to get to the front of the line prematurely.
9.  DO NOT travel to places that can’t handle bad weather.  Namely, Atlanta.  (but to be fair, they got stuck taking flights that should have gone to the midwest and north east, so they had probably a worse day than I did).

Off to bed I go, hoping for a much more peaceful and uneventful day tomorrow.  Good night 🙂

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I am a 45 yo busy career single mom and doctoral student attempting to find her inner athlete, be a gluten-free(ish) vegan, and find a way to balance it all without going crazy! I love to cook, read, run, box, do yoga, dance, travel, and learn as many new things as I can - which often gets me in trouble.... I am passionate about life in general, and if I didn't write about it, I'd probably implode.

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