This year I opted not to travel for Thanksgiving. Nothing gives me agita worse than treading on a moving walkway in the airport behind a three-year-old whose parents have given her a miniature suitcase, which seems to serve the sole purpose of adding drag to an already impossibly slow-moving human being.
In the past I braved the airport crowds – specifically Thanksgiving 2003. I was a senior in college, who’d been out late with friends the night before, despite having a 6AM flight the following morning. Teetering on a couple hours of sleep, I threw myself, a giant suitcase, and a wad of cash into the back of a taxi. I limped through check in and crashed when I arrived at the gate.
When I found my gate, I picked the closest seat next the boarding door, so that I would hear the announcements. Unfortunately, my desperate need for sleep, lack of coffee, and being wrapped in a full-length sleeping bag coat was the perfect recipe to send me into a deep slumber. And when I sleep, I sleep like the dead.
/// time passes, so so much time passes ///
The next thing I knew, a security guard was shaking my lapels. I blinked into his stare and he yelled my name and asked if I could confirm my identity. Startled, I confirmed with a nod and wide eyes. He yelled to the check in desk, “I found her!” I asked what happened and he told me that everyone boarded the plane, but the flight was grounded because a passenger (me) checked a bag and then did not get on the flight. They were calling my name over the intercom for a half hour, while I napped next to the gate agent.
When I got on the plane, my captive audience shot daggers and disapproving head shakes. Then, one wise ass at the back of the plane started a slow clap just for me. Take a bow.