A few weeks ago (already, where does the time go,) I was happily sitting in the Chicago airport, waiting patiently for my flights to get rolling, and for a great weekend in DC.
I was heading to the U.S. Capitol Classics/China Open and I was PUMPED. I’d never been and I’d only ever heard great things about the event. So, there I sat, happily bopping back and forth and looking at that one store that has all the crazy Star Wars art that I’ll never buy, but that is plenty cool.
Little did I know how crazy it was about to get.
Flight number 1 was to La Guardia, NY. We left on time, but after that moment, pretty much notjhing went according to schedule. We landed on the tarmac and sat for 45 minutes. I remember watching the clock get closer and closer to the time I was supposed to board to the D.C. airport, but had the odd feeling of relief and dread when I got three or four notifications in a row about my connecting flight also being delayed.
We finally get out of the plane, and I find the my gate. The flights been delayed again. Not, I have an hour to kill. So, I wander, look around and generally decide La Guardia is a pretty nice airport.
My flight is delayed again. Then again. Then a pilot stands up on some chairs and starts explaining how flights are delayed, and why asking the same question over and over isn’t going to yield different results.
Then the flight is cancelled.
I had been expecting this. And I went and stood in line with everyone else in the terminal. Apparently flights for the entire region had been cancelled, so the line was pretty long. There was a woman behind me wearing a lot of glitter and an enormous pink sweatshirt crying into a phone about staying in the airport. I wasn’t sure how to handle that, but I was also debating staking out a best spot for staying the night.
They go fast.
I’m in this line for a long time, lady is on her phone the whole time. I get to the top, and I’m told to expedite the process, I should use one of the kiosks. I try it, it doesn’t work, I lose my place in line.
I take a short walk and come back, this time asking one of the people in charge if there’s a number I can call. I get that, and then am on the phone for a while talking to a number of pleasant people about the options for getting me out of NYC and in DC.
There are none.
Though, I did have a very nice woman thank me for being so kind to her on the phone. I can only imagine that job has little thanks. Be nice to the phone people!
Next plan, rent a car to drive a few hours to D.C.! Except, there’s only one wrinkle in this plan. There are no cars left. They’ve all been rented out. Me and a business man we’ll call John (John had a bluetooth on the whole time. He was very fancy) hatched a plan to go to ANOTHER rental place somewhere else, except that quickly fell through. While John was working his way through another phone tree, I offered the idea of an Amtrak.
John was not excited. So, I said my goodbyes and wandered over to the taxi line, jumped in, and got to drive trough New York City for the first time ever in my life.
It was AWESOME! And I took zero pictures (because my phone was dying)
Keeping with the theme of nothing going according to plan, the Amtrak I wanted was sold out, so I got to hang out in Penn Station until 4:40am and then dozed in the train, got in an Uber, and finally (FINALLY) arrived at my location.
Next up, the awesomeness of U.S. Capitol Classics/China Open and a slew of running around constantly! Also, why my hair turned blue, a story of pennies, breaking boards, and an army of children.