Greetings from travellers purgatory. I am on hour twelve of my trip east and I have made it no farther than the Delta terminal in Las Vegas. My flight out of LA was two hours late taking off. I was one of twenty people who had forty minutes in McCarren to transfer to an Orlando flight and US Air assured us that they would probably hold the flight for us and even if we didn't make it, we were rescheduled on alternative flights. They failed to mention that they had rescheduled us through Phoenix on the 24th, which is to say, tomorrow. (As an aside, we were also told here that they never hold a flight. The attendant actually said, "Well, they lied to you.")
As it turns out a number of us were able to get seats on a red eye that leaves here at 10:30 and arrives in Orlando at 6am. Those who know me, can imagine how well I will fare meeting my brother, sister, brother-in-law, niece, family friend, and her six year old daughter at 7am or so when we can get from Orlando to Melbourne.
Did I mention the special security screening where they make you walk through this weird CAT-scan-like structure that blows jets of air at you? It's like a waterless jacuzzi standing on end. Anyway, the fact that I was in the airport nine hours early for my flight apparently triggered some terrorist red flag and I was marked for special screening.
In any case, I am excited that it's only a little more than two hours before my flight should depart, and I'll be at my sister's house in about eight hours.
Things I am grateful for:
My ipod shuffle (and Conor's eclectic mixes which are providing most of the contents)
Free wireless at McCarren airport
The Invisible Circus, the Jennifer Egan novel I brought with me
Family like Pat who is willing to drive to Orlando at the ass-crack of dawn on Christmas eve to pick me up
Did I mention my shuffle?
Oh, and the fact that I'm a non-smoker. Big time. If I were still a smoker, it would be a bad, bad, bad scene today.
The woman behind me in line at US Air customer service told me there's this show on the Oxygen network called "Snapped" that's about women who just "snap." I'm here to tell you, that would be me. Add a little withdrawal to this equation and I fear to even contemplate...