Saint Louis has a HOLD on me……..
Okay, Not meeting my husband in Paris afterall, not riding the train back to my cute little apartment, not feeling the cold damp air, whispering fun stories to my husband on the RER, no unpacking the two huge suitcases in the apt and filling it with all our meaningful STUFF, no baguette with brie in the morning.
And I was 1 hour and 40 minutes early!!. So I (mistakingly ) thought it should be enough time to do all that ticket counter/security junk. Wrong.
I could blame it all on Jan 2nd being the day EVERYONE returns to their homebase. Or, it could be from the stupidty of that guy that caused a breech in Security somewhere this weekend, which then in turn caused the TSA agents to be extra slow and cautious. Yeah, I could so blame them, because it took everyone incredibly long to get through security, after being in an already 45 minute line at Ticket Counter because they were x-raying a lot of bodies and doing the “pat down”, moi included. I mean, really, what? Why? So it’s all their fault. But it’s not. It’s mine and mine alone, I suppose. My passport and ticket and upgrade were all in my hand which I shoved into the little red and green Christmas bag when my flight was announced in security as the “final boarding call”. I did what the French people do, and said, “I’m on that flight they just announced may I go ahead of you?” Which I was sure would be looked upon, from the Americans in my midst, as horrendous and ofcourse they wouldn’t let me through, but I was surprised and they actually made way for me, and then the person behind me, and then the person behind them. (All going to PHL.) Whew. No ugliness, I was so relieved. But then after tearing off my boots, placing my Mac in the bin, the small carryon, my satchel, which had the little Christmas bag stuffed in it along with the passport and the ticket – It was another 10 minutes AFTER those things were put on the belt that I finally was able to get “body screened” and then had to wait for the results of THAT, and I’m thinking….”I’m practically naked……I have a simple turtleneck, stretch slacks, socks, underwear, no belts, no metal, no underwire bra, no barretts, no nothing, just my skin under this and it took so long for the body scan to produce the results that I was “a- okay”. I kept looking at my stuff over on the other belt because it had been sitting towards the end for quite sometime with a whole lot of other stuff piling up behind it. It all looked to be there, but it was still far away. Finally, yes, FINALLY, they “released “ me and I dashed over to the belt to retrieve my stachel, my boots, my small carryon and looked up and down for “something else” but didn’t see it and I don’t know why I didn’t think “CHRISTMAS BAG”, but I didn’t and off I went. And I do mean OFF…….as in running. If any of you know me, it might be obvious already that I do not run. My knees are shot, I am lucky to do all the walking I do , especially steps, without so much as a cane. The Agent made the announcement at the gate that the flight was closing in 3 minutes. When I hear this I am all the way at the other end and start to run. But I can’t run. So it was sort of a hobble and my heart started racing and I was breathing like an asmatic, and thought, “there is just no way, as my computer bag kept falling off my back……along with my coat because the computer bag was dragging it off of me.” When I arrived at Gate 17, Nancy, the sweet agent dashed my seat in my hand and off I went down the jet way. When I got to my seat, I started coughing uncontrollably and was still gasping for air. The water helped, but I just could not control the coughing and would cough into my down coat so I didn’t piss everyone off. When I looked down to make sure my phone was off, I looked for my little Christmas bag with my passport and ticket and – well, it wasn’t there, and it was too late to get off the plane as they were pushing back.
Oh Mon Dieu!!!!!
The coughing was really bad now and I coughed and sputtered and cried all at the same time. My fate was clear…….I was not going to Paris today either and I would have to fly back to Saint Louis and hopefully retrieve my passport, unless someone else picked up that little bag, (which if that was the case, is another huge security breach!)
This is the SECOND time that I’ve tried now to get to Paris in 3 days. David had to leave without me on United the other day cause flights were full. (We’re always on standby for all you non-airline people who don’t know this about the way we travel.)
But, hey, these non-rev passes are my only BENEFIT after 19 years, so hey,
you just roll with the punches, I suppose………
So, dear reader, THAT is where I am now……God only knows what is really going to happen next.
Well, looking at the bright side – I’ll be in a lot of cafes and bars today all day – and I’ll collect all the free napkins to put in my satchel – cause once you’re in EUROPE, you need a lot of free stuff like – NAPKINS!!!
Life is such an adventure, and so many times I wish that it were not.
Okay. You will not believe how this ended…………………………….
As I was getting ready to step aboard my USAirways flight back to Saint Louis.……….up walks Susan, the Flight Attendant from my STL-PHL
flight and she is – holding – HOLDING the LITTLE GREEN CHRISTMAS BAG with my PASSPORT, my F/C UPGRADE, my Life…..so to speak…and
I almost fainted.
I am now very visibly drunk (forgive me God)……..and now am sitting resolutely in a white rocking chair looking at the sky and the concrete of massive parking garages in Philadelphia Airport waiting for my check-in time at the gate for my flight to Paris.
My life is SO not boring.