Life is Busting out ALL Over!

So, apparently I’m one of “those” people…

Posted on: June 10, 2008

Hi. I’m currently typing from a computer on a campus in Charlotte, North Carolina. I have an interview here in about 3 hours. My suit is packed in my carry-on and I smell. Also, I paid for my own flight here to interview. (which, in this biz of higher ed, is UNHEARD of. My professor, who I advised on whether or not I should, told me I was the first person he’s heard of that did not get their on campus interview paid for. Awesome. If you really knew me, you’d know that I’m the first in a some other categories, more health related, still nothing to be proud of, so being the first, in this case, again just is par for the course).

The job is one I’m interested in, had a great phone interview, and basically people, I just want OPTIONS. So last week in the span of 24 hours I got one phone call to ask me to interview, hours later I did over the phone, hours after that I was trying to find flights – 5 days before. My professor said to look it as an investment. I prefer to look at it like the haircut and the Wii Fit I had saved up to purchase. Whatev.

Except for the fact that when I called the day after to confirm the interview was do-able on my budget, the boss guy told me it would be ONE HOUR. I booked a 6am flight (why, god, does EVERYTHING have to go through Atlanta?? I just dont’ understand it) to get home by midnight tonight for ONE HOUR. Also, I have no idea where I’m going because they didn’t tell me and it’s a good thing I’m so gosh darn nosy because I pretty much stalked the boss-man to find out where his office is, memorized the campus map and will show up at 3pm.

I realize that if this is indicative of how the place runs, it may not be the right place for me. But I like adventures and I especially like adventurers where I can rent a car and explore/look at stuff off the main road I need to be on – it’s cool. So I’m here.

However, the recent events of this morning made me realize I am a stubborn little b*tch and actually I’m sort of asking myself: This is not my beautiful house. This is not my beautiful wife. Am I right? Am I wrong? MY GOD WHAT HAVE I DONE??

(and yes, I recite Talking Heads whenever I’m super confused, I find it makes me laugh, and then feel better)

And you would too if you had to go through the National Lampoon’s goes to Charlotte trip I went on this morning:

1. I had to wake up at 3am to leave the house on time to drive the hour and a half to get to the airport

2. I left at 3:45am

3. I went “to bed” at midnight but I actually fell asleep at 2:50am. YUP. I worry because I’m awesome and therefore I don’t sleep when I’m worried/excited.

4. There was a typhoon hitting Indiana early in the morning and mother effing 18 wheeler trucks going at least 75 on the highway. I only went 60-65 even though it’s a 70mph zone b/c well, I was EXHAUSTED and I didn’t want to DIE but I thought I might because everytime one of those stupid trucks past me it would kick up so much water that it literally was going OVER my car.

5. Totally got IN the airport at 5:20 – my flight was at 5:57am – but I have made it to the Indy airport with literally 10 minutes to spare and made the flight so I wasn’t worried.

6. Until I got to the 500 person (no joke) LINE for security. It wrapped around two corridors. Except if you paid membership fees in to the “club” – then you could go into the retinal scan and get in, in like 30 secs (having the gov’t own a picture of my retinas… uh, no thanks) However it went by kinda fast.

7. Until I got ready to put my bins on the cool roller things into the conveyor belt and the guy in front of me had to empty EVERYTHING out of his bag one by one into separate bins. If he was building legos, he would have gone faster. Then everyone started cutting in line in front of him (and me). That was AWESOME. I LOVE PEOPLE.

8. I had about 0 minutes left till my plane left but I had faith. Man did I have FAITH!

9. Then I got to my gate, in about 2 seconds and I see a couple standing at the counter. And then I see my plane pulling away from the gate. People, I can NOT reiterate this enough. I have flown a lot. I was a chapter consultant for my international sorority (whoo! Canada!) – I went to 33 different chapters and between going home on breaks and flying from one end of the country to the other every 5 days, I flew about 75 times in 9 months. Plus some other flights here and there in years after. I.have.never.missed.a.flight. NEVER.

10. And as I was waiting for the gate agent to finish booking the couple in front of me on a direct flight to Vegas for a $25 fee, (yet they were flying to ATL first, too. What the H?) this happened:

Elderly Lady going to Vegas: Those damn security lines screwed us over!

Me: Unless you had the retinal scan, then you could go through just fine.

Elderly Man going to Vegas: RECTAL EXAM????(!!!!!)

Me: (pause) Yeah… I’d almost rather do that. (WTF. MY GOD, WHAT HAVE I DONE!)

11. Then rectal man and wife left and it was my turn. Now, I wasn’t worried about getting on another flight because I had until about 2pm to get here and make it to my interview (although I needed to write a paper during my waiting time) and when I had checked the airline previously there were like 4 options that would have gotten me here by then but the earliest happened to be the cheapest. Well, the airline that rhymes with MairTran totally lies (Joe LIESSSSSSSSSS, Joe liesssssssssss (I do this too when someone says the word “lies”)). There was only one flight after mine and it would have gotten me in by 4pm. When my interview would end.

This is the point where my stubbornness kicks in, I could have just gone home, gotten some sleep, worked on my project and called here and said sorry. But dammit, I paid for that stupid ticket, and I was at the airport and so I did what anyone else would do. I bought a one way ticket to Greensboro, NC. Double checked with MairTran that my return flight I already checked in on, would still let me fly (the peeps at U.S. Mairways freaked me out). Greensboro was about $1200 cheaper than flying into Charlotte so I did it and consoled myself that I’d have a one and a half hour drive (I freakishly adore road trips) and I’d still make it.

12. Get it all squared a way and enter a new security line, much, much, MUCH shorter. However, the guy that checked my ID and ticket told me I was special. Thinking he saw my birthday (because it is SPECIAL to the point everyone makes a comment about it when they see it special) I said, “Thank you”. Then he goes, “No, honey, you are really special, like special screened.”

Yup, I was the airline security equilivalent of riding the short yellow bus special. Apprently there is some rule that if you buy a ticket within 24 hours of your flight you go on some special watch list. And you have to stand in a special section, that is marked RESTRICTED with a special rope. All by yourself. And although I knew it was just protocol, I was instantly regretting that I watched Brokedown Palace the other weekend.

13. So literally 15 minutes after standing in my special section ALONE, my new plane was boarding. I mean, HELLO, what if I had been a threat or something, you don’t just leave them alone. Anyway, some lady came over and took me somewhere else and I got a pat down. Then some guy went through my bag, my laptop and my carry-on with tampons, which was awesome. I wasn’t even embarassed! Although he seemed more embarassed by my Lady Speed Stick in the pocket. Whatev.

14. I’m clear of my special status and I join the very last group boarding the plane… wait for it… to CHARLOTTE. That’s right. I was flying into Charlotte to get my connecting flight to Greensboro to then drive to Charlotte. I was like, What the HELL? So I asked a flight attendant if I could just leave when I got to Charlotte and not even bother to go to Greensboro, considering that’s where I have to be in the first place, but I didn’t want a lifetime of special watch list. She said it would be fine, so I was excited.

15. Until I got to my seat, where some girl was sitting in between two guys she clearly wanted to sit next to, so I had to ask her what seat was hers so I could sit there instead. She had no idea. Seriously PEOPLE, get with the program. So then while I waited for her to figure out her life, I had to try to find a place to put my carry on in the overhead compartments, which were ALL FULL. Also, I must illustrate the scene. I am tall and I am broad in the shoulders, I also have some pointy elbows. Also, I am not coordinated. I literally just said “Sorry, Sorry, Sorry, Sorry…” as I was walking up and down the aisles running into peoples’ knees with my carry-on, my bag/purse hit a couple shoulders, my elbow grazed some people’s hair. You get the idea.

16. As the plane was taxiing, the chick finally figured out her seat, 17B. 17B was smack in the middle of two big dudes. One dude  kinda big, the other dude REALLLLLL big. Like so big he set his arms folded on his belly and slept the entire way. When he got out to let me squeeze in, I seriously thought I was being Punk’d, like at any minute Ashton was going to pop out with cameras and then everyone would laugh, and then I’d say to the camera, “haha, I got Punk’d” and then they’d usher me to first class where I’d have the nice flight attendant who told me I could ditch on Greensboro.

Nope. First big dude stared out the window like he’d had a long lost cloud for a pet as a boy and REAL big dude slept with arms folded on his belly. It worked out fine until REAL big dude started snoring and then later was speaking some language (I think Portuguese?). I thought he was on his Bluetooth, he sounded so demanding. Nope. Just sleeping.

16. So I finally got off the plane with some sleep a full hour and a half before I had originally planned to arrive.

Also, I got insurance on my rental car, just in case.

This thing better BE worth it!

And also, this might be the DUMBEST of dumb decisions I have ever made.

But new story, BONUS.


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musings and panic attacks of a Chicago girl embarking on a new life in Texas. Only it's not always June and it's not in song.

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