Emily Little

Long, strange trip home was worth it

Last week, I had the opportunity to accompany my mom on a work trip to Boston. When she wasn't attending workshops, we had the chance to visit the site of the Boston bombings, go whale watching and visit with family friends who live in the city. Although the week was a phenomenal experience, when it was over, we were exhausted and ready to be home. Wednesday afternoon we took a taxi to Logan Airport and began what would turn out to be a long journey home. We arrived at the airport, checked our bags and headed towards security. I had the quickest airport security experience of my life, which I thought was a good sign for how the rest of the evening would go. I could not have been more wrong. We waited at our gate for about an hour before we began boarding. When we got on the plane, we situated our carry-on bags and took our seats. Our plane was supposed to fly out at 5:30, but at about 6:00 the captain came over the intercom stating that there were weather problems in Atlanta, where our connecting flight was. He had very little information about the situation other than that no flights were being allowed in or out of Atlanta. As we sat on the motionless plane, we realized that it was extremely unlikely we would make our connecting flight. After sitting on the tarmac for two hours, our captain announced we had clearance to fly. At first, I was happy to hear we would be on our way soon, but my happiness was short-lived.
Once we were off the ground, the woman sitting behind me began making some bizarre comments. She whined, "I wish everyone's phone on this plane would die so I could get some peace and quiet!" The odd part is that the plane was completely silent, and most of the passengers were actually asleep. A few minutes later she was audibly getting frustrated as she stated, "If I had a parachute, I would jump out of this plane right now!" Her commentary continued until we were landing and she yelled, "Look at all the Christmas lights," referring to the runway lights. "Have you ever noticed how every airport does that, the red and green lights I mean," she said. The man sitting next to her tried explaining to her that the colors of the lights probably have specific meanings, but she wouldn't have it. "No, it's so Santa can land anywhere he wants," she exclaimed. After navigating around thunderstorms and trying to ignore screaming babies, there was a bit of hilarity. The second we touched the pavement, rather than waiting until the plane stopped moving, a woman from the back of the plane darted up the aisle to the front. She squatted there, as if no one would see her. A flight attendant stood in front of her and said, "I'm going to need you to go back to your seat, unless you'd like a meeting with an Air Marshal." The woman hesitated for a moment before standing up and walking back to her seat. A few minutes later, when the seatbelt sign was unlit, the same woman darted back to the front to ensure she would be the first one off of the plane. The man next to me yelled, "She's off!" and the entire plane burst into laughter. After getting off the plane, we ran to our connecting flight and made it just before they closed the doors. When we arrived in Orlando, I was ecstatic to be back in Florida. I couldn't help but laugh when the saying "It's not about the destination, it's about the journey" popped into my head.