As promised, I must fill you guys in on my horrendous adventure from Florida back to the Big Apple.
The trouble began from the moment I arrived at the airport in Gainsville. My flight was originally supposed to leave at 6:10 pm, but I learned it was delayed and wouldn’t get in to Atlanta until 9:00 pm. This was a problem, considering my connection to LaGuardia was supposed to take off at 8:40pm. They stuck me on an earlier flight, and even then, I didn’t take off until after 7:00 pm. This was all due to bad weather in Atlanta, so I crossed my fingers my connection would be delayed, as well. Once we’d landed and I found my gate, I sprinted all the way from terminal D to terminal A (Atlanta is a gigantic airport), only to find out that I had missed boarding by minutes. Basically, my plane was sitting at the gate, but they wouldn’t let me on. The little ticket scanners wouldn’t rebook my flight, because the plane hadn’t taken off. All the signs pointed to waiting in line to talk to a Delta representative to re-book my flight. With all the delays, this was quite a common realization. I’ve never seen so many people waiting in line at an airport. I waited for what seemed like centuries, knowing that it was just about 11:00 pm and that the last flight to LaGuardia had been delayed until 11:06. I should have just gone to that terminal and rebooked the ticket myself, but I guess I’ll know that for next time. I sprinted from the Delta help counter to terminal B, where I thought there was a giant line of people waiting to board the plane. I quickly found out that the people in this line were waiting to rebook their flights just like I was, thanks to an extremely scary looking man who decided to berate me for “thinking I was special and could just cut the line.”
So, not only was I terrified of missing the flight and having to spend the night either in the airport or in a hotel alone, add being screamed at and embarassed to the list. I wanted to die. I ran basically the entire length of the airport (remember, this is carrying maaaaybe a million pounds of stuff) to gate E, where a flight to Newark was delayed until 12:15 am. The people at the gate there were so nice, they were more like parents than frustrated Delta employees. Unfortunately, that fligth was completely booked. The guy at the desk told me he was going to call over to the other gate, assuring me that he wouldn’t let me have to stay in the airport alone overnight. When the people working the other flight picked up the phone, he said “We have a woman here…I mean, a child, an unnacompanied minor, who needs to get on that plane.” I think he knew I wasn’t a minor, but, because he’d said that, they had to get me on the plane. I ran all the way back to terminal B, and, finally, boarded a plane to LaGuardia. I was dripping sweat and shaking violently from nerves, exertion, and the fact that my dinner had been a pack of raisinettes seven hours earlier…but I was on a plane! I grab a cab back to 305 at LaGuardia and dragged myself into my room a little before 3:00 am. I set my alarm for 10:00 am the next day. In the morning, I rolled out of bed, threw on some clothes, bypassed the subway in favor of a taxi, and grabbed breakfast down the street from Poets House. I don’t know how everything worked out, but it did. What an ordeal.