Airport Adventures

2 Jun

So here I am waiting *patiently* at Dulles International Airport about one hour outside of my home in Washington, DC. It’s been nearly a month since I’ve posted in this blog and I didn’t expect that this post was going to be about my “adventure” in the airport but so life goes.

I arrived here at 9:30am ready with my small backpack (no checked bags for this girl!) ready to board my flight to Tokyo, Japan. I went through security and headed onto my gate. As I was walking on I checked back at the flight status monitor and there I saw that dreaded notice next to my flight, in big red blinking letters ‘CANCELED’. My heart sank and all I could do was take a deep breath, and mentally prepare myself for those painful negotiations with the airline staff. Yup, indeed my flight was canceled. I jumped on the phone to call United and bolted out of my terminal an headed to ticketing/check-in. There was only one other flight to Tokyo today and it was overbooked, I didn’t have a shot. After 40 minutes on the phone and in line at the ticketing counter, the very gracious representative got me on one of the last seats on that flight and told me to sprint to the counter. And indeed I sprinted over with my bag on and all. I got there only to find out they had ‘closed’ the flight and could not get me on – no matter no how it just wasn’t going to happen. So I sprinted back to the United ticketing counter to see what could be done. Patiently I waited in line again… There was only one more
flight out that could get me to Singapore and it leaves at 10:00pm (it was 12:00pm at this point). I didn’t have a choice, it was 10:00pm or nothing at all. So I took the new flight.

I know so many of you have had a similar terrible travel experience. We’ve all had cancelled flights, missed connections, staying over night etc. But for me this one just about took the cake. I suppose there is a reason for everything.

With that I had to come up with some way to find adventure (or just fun) in these 10 hours at Dulles airport. Oh and without a computer, I actually left my computer home for the first time ever and am writing this via my iPhone. I contemplated going home and then coming back but a taxi each way is $120 and I’d get stuck in rush hour traffic on my way back. So my ‘airport adventure’ plan of the day:
1. Carefully review the airport’s Shop & Dine map
2. Choose a gate (Dulles has physically separate gates)
3. Review the menus at every single sit-down restaurant in the gate area (I don’t do fast food unless absolutely necessary)
4. Select best restaurant option for lunch (it was almost 1:30 by this time)
5. Enjoy lunch
6. Walk laps around the gate as a post-meal ‘digestion’ walk
7. Pretend I am a spy and follow someone that looks like they will be here for a while too
8. Visit the massage bar for a 15 minute massage
9. Go to the bookstore to check out the new releases
10. Try to find an Internet kiosk that has computers
11. Head to next gate to explore
12. Walk laps at next gate to assess all options and then check out all the gadget shops
13. Check email again
14. Visit the nail salon at gate D (although I never get manicures cause they are destroyed in less than 24 hours)
15. Walk laps around gates C and D
16. Assess all restaurants in gates C and D
17. Choose a restaurant for dinner – eat a light dinner and glass of wine
18. Go to magazine shop and buy trashy mags for flight (I’ve already got my good news mags in my bag)
19. Now it SHOULD be time for boarding!

If you were stuck at the airport for 10 hours what would you do? Share a comment, I’d love your ideas! I still have another 7 hours!

Now I promise you that my next post will be a lot more fun and exciting than this one. But I suppose this is just a daily reality of one of the very unglorified aspects of traveling. Look forward to reporting from Singapore next! Bon voyage!

One Response to “Airport Adventures”

  1. rainworks June 2, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

    Good for you. You know how to make LemonAid!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: