Last week I flew to El Paso Texas. I arrived 12 hours late.
The day started out great. Everything seemed normal. I hopped in my car and headed to the airport.
I pulled into the long term parking lot and found a space for my car. Got on the shuttle and arrived an hour and half early to the airport. Now to enjoy a donut and coffee.
Then I saw the sign on the electronic board…”DELAYED”.
What? No! Can’t be!
I did everything right. I’m early! No delays!
My flight was scheduled at 8:10am headed to Chicago with a connecting flight getting me to El Paso 11:35 am. And there was a 2 hour layover in Chicago. Well, that was the plan.
We were instructed to board the plane and we would be leaving soon. Hah…no!
“DELAYED” turned into an hour of patiently waiting…in the plane…on the tarmac.
Disembarked and back into the airport.
They suggested we rebook our flights. WHAT??
The flight wasn’t cancelled, just not going anywhere for a while.
So to the front desk I went. The line was 25 people deep by the time I got there and I wondered if I would miss my flight trying to get the whole situation resolved. The clerk at the front desk reminded me that the flight wasn’t cancelled just delayed for a time. A time? When? She had no answers other then wait.
Back through security I went. Back to the gate. Back to being as patient as I could.
Two hours have gone by and my flight is still grounded waiting for clearance. Then the announcement is made to reboard everyone. Yay…I think!
Boarded plane for the second time only to be told 15 minutes later that the plane would be delayed some more. Okay, I’m a fuming now. I missed my connection in Chicago and I’m still in my local airport.
Back off the plane to wait some more. And more…and more…and…
Six hours from my original take off time and my flight has announced they are ready for us. Back into the plane we go. And yes, we finally take off and on our way.
Landed in Chicago only to be told that my connecting flight was no longer an option and I might have to spend the night somewhere. Ah, NOPE! I was about to lose it…and then I remembered the scene from “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” where Steve Martin’s character at the airport goes off on the airport attendant and then she says, “You’re (bleep)!”
Well, I was as nice as I could be considering I was now 4 hours passed when I was supposed to have arrived in El Paso and I was still stuck half way across the USA waiting for a flight to get me there.
Attendant gets me on a flight at 8pm landing at 10:30pm – okay I’ll take it.
Eight o’clock comes around and yes, there’s a plane…and yes, we are allowed to board.
Then like clockwork…DELAYED.
We sat on the tarmac for an hour getting cleared for flight.
Yes, we finally took off and when I finally did land in El Paso I was only 12 hours late…a bit frazzled and slightly off kilter a bit.
And all through the ordeal I just wanted to scream (BLEEP…BLEEP…BLEEP!)
But, I kept hearing it from so many disgruntled travelers that I thought why? Shit happens.
Sometimes when life throws us curveballs, we can either dodge them, try to hit them or be hit by them.
It’s a choice! And, it’s an adventure!
It’s not controllable no matter how hard we try to make it so…life doesn’t work that way.
And, frankly I believe delays in life are there to slow us down, to make us reflect on our own patience, to remind us to smell the roses, to live life and accept downtime.
This is precisely the reason I wrote “Lessons From The Dojo: 101 Kick Butt Ways To Improve Your Life, Business and Relationships” I wanted to give readers multiple ways to live life better.
Have you read the book yet?