You know how it is. Rushing around trying to get yourself - and your family - ready to walk out that door to get to the airport on time. Last minute running around, figuring out what clothes to take, making sure whatever needs to be taken is in the suitcases, and making sure all that needs of the house are taken care of.
Jake got home Thursday afternoon and had about three weeks of laundry that needed to be done. I had the whole day to do laundry, pack only for myself, and get all those last minute details done. And yet, as the hour of departure neared, I was more frantic. As usual, for our family, we were late walking out the door and drove frantically to the airport in fear that we would run out of time.
The first potential problem is parking. There is limited parking at our airport and there are many times that the signs say "parking lot FULL." Usually when the signs show state this status they aren't actually full but it means you'll be driving around for a while looking for a spot. As we approached the airport and could see the signs, we were relieved to see each and every lot's sign said "OPEN." Phew.
Don drops us off and drives to the economy lot. The plan was for us to go in and grab a place in the long, long lines and by the time Don gets the car parked and takes the shuttle back to the airport, we may have moved close enough to see the top of the heads of the agents who stand behind the automated kiosks.
As the kids and I walk in, we're pleased to see that the lines are medium in length. There were quite a few travelers, but nothing like we've experienced in the past. We then innocently check the monitors and realize that our flight had been delayed by an hour. Ugh!
All that frantic frenzy the last hour at home. Had I known the flight was delayed, I could have used that extra hour. At least we then weren't worried that we would be able to get our bags checked, get through the dreaded security lines, and to our plane in time for it's departure.
After checking in the bags and before going through security, we stopped to eat a quick meal at one of the many fast food eateries. But we didn't want to linger too long because we still would have to stand in the long security lines. At our airport, you have to pass through one of two security areas before you can board the underground train that take you to the the gates.
After eating, we head over to one of the security areas. It's CLOSED!! Great! We figure the other one is going to be a mad house. But as we approach the other one, we realize that there are NO lines. None. Zip. Nada. We wind through the empty rows only to walk straight to the agent and screening area. On to the train. On to our plane.
As the escalator ended at the platform and the monitors stared at us with their useful information, we realized we were in for a longer wait. As we sat at the gate, the plane was delayed a couple more times and we finally boarded nearly two hours after the original departure time, which wouldn't have been a huge deal except our original flight time was 9:00 pm, which meant we didn't touch down in California until 12:20 local time, which was 1:20 our body time.
I'll spare you the part of the story where we had to then go get our rental car. Let me end by saying that it felt wonderful to finally fall into bed at my mother-in-law's.... at 2:30 - which my body was screaming... it's 3:30!!