Ok, so I don’t normally write about my life on the road as it were, but today has been nothing but exceptional, in that it has sucked.
I was scheduled to travel from Memphis to Spokane, WA via Northwest (my preferred carrier being that it is a hub in Memphis), then on to United to Spokane. I did not buy the tickets so I have no control over them, my client did…mistake #1.
I get to the airport and it’s a nice sunny day. Sit down to futz with the myriad projects (I’m not bragging, but I’m awfully busy for all the sudden), and what happens, those beautiful puffy clouds that used to be puppy dogs and other random shapes turned into a mass concentration of hatred and despair. Time for a drink.
When my plane finally shows up, all looks well. We’re a little behind, but I have a 3 hour layover in Denver…no biggie. I sit down and start back to work again.
2 hours later, after boarding, deplaning, and boarding again, we are off…kinda. Seems that in the frenzy to “fix” the plane, the ground crew left something hanging off the front gear. Ugh! Turns out it was no biggie, but the time is now working against me.
We land in Denver. It’s 6:15, my connection leaves at 6:36. I frantically call one of the other guys on the flight and ask him to have them hold it, I’ll be there in 15 min.
The plane stops at the gate. I’m ready. First Class be damned, I WILL BE THE FIRST PERSON OFF THIS PLANE. *bing* I jump from my seat and race down the aisle. This isn’t my first rodeo, but I can honestly say I’ve never cut it this close. *tap,tap,tap (no not you Thaddeus), the door opens, and I’m off.
For those of you who haven’t experienced the signature OJ Simpson Hertz commercial moment, well, all I can say is that it is fabulous.
I dash through the concourse to the terminal tram. The doors are about to shut. I yell like a little girl and someone is kind enough to hold the doors for me, ignoring their mortality.
Wait for it, wait for it…the doors open and I continue my sprint racing up the escalator, past the mom and kids who are probably still cursing me even though I messed not a hair on the childs chinny, chin, chin, and begin my final mad dash to the gate.
B45…B45…ugh. My smoke scarred lungs are exploding at this point. There’s B38…oh Jesus, please don’t make me count. B41, B43…almost there, just keep pushing. I dance with a Denver cop, he looks at me like I’m crazy. WHY THE HELL ARE THESE GATES SO FAR AWAY FROM EACH OTHER!
Then I see it, B45. I use the last bit of strength that I have to push harder, run faster through the mad congregation of cattle that most call people, round the corner, and the door is shut.
I almost lose it, but the gate agent quickly types in her code, takes my ticket, and without missing a beat I dash for the end of the jetway.
I’ve been burned like this before people. The plane may not be there when I get to the end. I press harder, sucking wind with every step. RUN FORREST RUN!!!!! Oh Jesus, this is the longest damn jetway EVER!
As I reach the end of the jetway, I see the door of the plane beginning to shut.
“Stop”, I yell, the word spewing from my mouth like the cries of a pre-pubescent boy at the hands of a much larger bully.
The flight attendant looks around the corner and spots me, opens the door and I am the last one to board.
It takes me 30 minutes to fully catch my breath, and for my body to stop screaming at me. I traveled 3/4 mile in 7 minutes, through one of the busiest airports in the west. No, it’s not a land speed record, but it was far faster than I should have been able to.
Of course, I have no luggage. That won’t arrive until tomorrow…if I’m lucky. But still, I’m here, in one piece, though sore as hell.
All you runners out there are crazy sumbitches, that includes you sweetie.
I only hope that my trip home isn’t as “eventful”.
See ya on Thursday.