. . . or why I hate to travel.
After missing my flight on Saturday, I made absolutely sure to be at the airport nice and early on Sunday. I arrived at 12:30 for my 2:00 flight. The trip down to JFK was short and painless, but that's when the fun stopped for the day.
I had a four-hour layover at JFK, which was awful. JFK has got to be the nastiest, dirtiest, most crowded airport I've ever been to, ever. I waited 30 minutes in line to get a sandwich, which I then took to an out-of-the-way corner to eat while I read. I had been in my quiet little spot, lying on the floor on my coat, for about 30 minutes when I noticed the dead rat on the floor about 6 feet from me. I quickly found a different and not-quite-so-secluded spot.
While I was standing at the gate to board the plane, after four hours of waiting, the gate attendant announced that passengers could purchase an upgrade to First Class for a mere $150. I briefly considered the option but then decided not to.
What a mistake that turned out to be.
We all got herded onto the plane, ready to get going. Then we sat on the tarmac for 45 minutes before the pilot announced the good news that we were 20th in line for takeoff. It was another 45 minutes before we finally left - a total of an hour and half of waiting. Once we were in the air, the pilot made another fun announcement - due to the strong headwinds, we wouldn't have enough fuel to make it all the way to Austin, so we'd be making a pit stop in Knoxville to get gas. I wanted to cry at that point.
Fourteen hours after getting to the airport in Albany, I walked through the door at home - at 1:30 in the morning. I was so tired that I didn't even check my e-mail when I got home, and as B can attest, that's saying something.
It occurred to me at some point during the interminable trip that in the amount of time it took me to get home, I could have flown someplace exotic and fun, like Australia.