Sunday, February 28, 2016

COMING HOME (WEDNESDAY FEB 24)

We got up early to go home on Wednesday.  We had to leave DJ's by 8:30 a.m. to make the flight.  It was sad saying goodbye to them, but I was ready to go home.  I liked Tennessee a lot more than I expected I would and we are going to try to visit down there once a year.  That's if we can afford it.


Joe set the GPS and we set off for Memphis and the airport.


We got there with no problem and returned the rental car.  Then we headed for the terminal, got our boarding passes and went through security.  After we were in the waiting area I looked at our passes and found out that we were not sitting together.  Joe was 5 rows behind me and we were both in the middle seat between two people.  I was not happy about that, but what can you do?  We were lucky we got any seats at all because we did it all last minute.

We hadn't eaten breakfast, so we went to a food truck.  Joe got a breakfast sandwich and I got another fruit cup.  And we both got water.
 
After a half hour wait we were able to board the plane.  The plane taxied out to the runway and then the pilot told us we would have an hour delay because Charlotte's airport was not allowing anyone to land because there was a tornado watch.  I knew we would miss our connecting flight because we had an hour layover.  *sigh*  After an hour and 15 minutes we were finally able to take off.

And it was a terrible flight!  The takeoff was so frightening.  Up, then level off, circle, up, level off, circle.  It went on and on.  Finally we leveled off and I settled down.  

But then there was the landing. The weather was so bad and I was sure we were going to crash.  The plane was blown sideways and almost did a spin.  The pilot would go down and try to right the plane and then go down and try to right it again.  We rocked back and forth and went up and down. I was so sick.  And not just me, but the whole row of ladies behind me and the lady across the aisle.  Joe said it didn't bother him a bit.  I glanced out the window and that was the wrong thing.  I saw the ground spinning around beneath us.  After about 20 minutes of a harrowing experience where I prayed a LOT, we landed.  I was sicker than I've been in a very long time.  I exited the plane first so I waited for Joe and we went to the next flight as fast as we could.  But it was at the other end of the airport and there was no chance that we could make it.

Yes, the flight was long gone.  We went to American Airlines Customer Service counter.  A man was standing at the counter ahead of us.  He had been standing there for 10 minutes.  No one was at the desk.  He said the lady at the desk had said she was taking her lunch and left.  A volunteer came by and said he would find someone to help us.  The man left so Joe and I were first when the lady came back a few minutes later.  There was a long line behind us.

She was able to get us on stand by for the next flight to Allentown which was 7:58 p.m.  It was about 2:00 p.m. then.  So we took it.

I sat in the waiting area while Joe wandered around a little bit.  There was a cool aircraft hanging from the ceiling so you know I had to take a picture of it.


Joe came back and said he had found a sushi place.  We both like sushi and it was lunch time and we had 6 hours to kill so we went for lunch.

It was a cute little food court with lots of different kinds of food.  There were burgers, Italian, Indian, and this Japanese place called Hissho Sushi.  There was a sushi bar you could sit at and some tables.  We both got vegetable sushi and sat at one of the tables.


You can't see it, but the bottom edge of the plate had wasabi and ginger.  The ginger really helped my upset stomach.  We were given chopsticks.  I had never seen any like these.  They were attached at the top and I couldn't get them apart.  Joe said he used them many times when he was in Japan and he separated them for me without breaking them.  This sushi was the best I have ever had anywhere.  Joe agreed.  We were so happy to have found this place.  When I got home I went on the internet and found there is one about 16 miles from us so we are going to go very soon.

We found the gate we were to use and settled down for the long wait.  I took some pictures out of the windows.




And what else do you do with time on your hands except take a selfie?


At one point I was sitting on the floor with my Kindle plugged into an outlet reading my book.  I looked up and saw Joe reading so I took a shot of him.


We had sat there for over two hours when we heard the announcement that the gate had been changed from E22 to E6.  We gathered our things and walked all the way back to where we had started.  Not only was the gate changed, but it was now leaving at 8:15 p.m.  We were still on standby and didn't even know if we would get on the plane.  I asked the agent when the next flight out would be if we couldn't get on and he said 8:00 p.m. the next day!  24 hours later!  So we sat and waited.

Then the flight was changed to 8:44 p.m.  The reason being there was no flight crew.  They had cobbled together everyone except a pilot.  The pilot was on his way in, but was being held up because of the bad weather.  There were tornadoes all up and down the east coast.

8:44 p.m. came and went and the flight was changed to 9:04 p.m.  At 9:00 p.m. our status was changed so I went up and got our boarding passes.  I was so thankful.  And we got to sit next to each other.

Around 9:15 p.m. a pilot came in, talked to the agent, then went out the door.  We thought he must be our pilot, but he walked away toward another plane.  But it was our pilot.  And because we were so late leaving we had to walk across the tarmac and go up the steps.

I was sitting next to the window this time.  I wasn't as scared as I thought I would be.  I just wanted to go home.  Joe had bought me some Dramamine so I took it now. I wasn't as worried about taking off as I was landing.  So about 9:30 p.m. we finally left Charlotte, NC and headed toward Allentown, PA.  It was an hour and a half flight, but the pilot said he knew we all wanted to go home so he'd make it in an hour.  And he did!

Here are some shots I took out of the window.  I took a lot, but most of them didn't turn out because of the reflection from the window and the movement of the plane.

Goodbye, Charlotte.  Can you see the clouds?  It was cool looking.


It was a full moon.  I tried to take a good close up of the moon but none of them turned out.


We watched a lightening storm for a lot of the way.  It was so fascinating to see it from the air.  So different than seeing it on the ground.  It almost looked like fireworks or maybe cannons going off.

We got to Allentown around 10:30 p.m., got our bags, paid for our parking ($56!)and headed for the car.

I started on the way home, but didn't know the way.  By this time it was about 11:30 p.m. and there wasn't much traffic.  That was good.  Joe had the GPS on and I was doing OK but then I started to get drowsy from the medicine.  Then it was more than drowsy and I was having a hard time keeping my eyes open.  I didn't know it would do that to me!  There was nowhere to pull over so I had to keep driving and Joe kept talking to me to keep me awake.  Finally we got to a place where I pulled into a gas station and we changed places.  I don't remember Joe driving home.  I went right to sleep.  We got home around 1:30 a.m.

We were so thankful to be home.  You know I slept good that night.

This is the end of Day 4 and the end of our trip.  Thanks for reading along on this lengthy post.

Kathy

5 comments:

  1. For all your excitement, troubles, concerns, worries, laughs, and tears...you and Joe made a difference in the lives of others, by going to Tennessee.
    Welcome back home, Home Sweet Home.

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  2. Wow, with all the changes, times, etc., I would have been sick the whole trip. Just glad you made it home, safe and sound and I know you were so glad to sleep in your own bed again. We think our Tennessee is a very nice, friendly (for the most part) and do hope you will visit again.

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  3. Home sweet home!!! I know you were both glad to be back and in your own beds!!!

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  4. What an adventure! I love the photos,especially the ones of you & Joe. Beautiful seeing the city in it's 'night lights'. There trul is no place like home. Welcome back! woof

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  5. Oh my oh my. I have certainly had those experiences flying back and forth to Colorado. It is not fun. You shouldn't have been driving. Glad your husband took over. I hope you are resting today.

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