Monday, August 4, 2008

the long road home

We drove to Idaho for a family reunion, but I had to be back before everyone else so I purchased a plane ticket to fly home. It was Sunday afternoon. My plane flies out of Pocatello at 7 pm. It is a small airport, of course, so I'm not worried about getting there two hours early. But Dave is taking his Dad camping and is hoping to be at the campsite before dark so I suggest they drop me off at the airport a little early so they can get on the road. I say my goodbyes at the door of this airport that I have never been in, and off they go. I step inside and although they do have a ticket counter, there is no one behind it and the lights are dimmed. I ask around about where to get my ticket and I am told to ring the bell at the counter (apparently in Mayberry, you have to wake up the sole employee from his afternoon nap to get some service). He takes about 7 seconds to look at my ID and issue my ticket. I ask where I go from there (there are no people around, no flow of traffic to follow) and he points to a sign about 20 feet away that says "all flights enter here". But the door was closed and locked. Apparently there was only one flight going out that evening and it was too early to start security processes. So I sit on a folding chair and read my book . . . for forever. Finally the security guy shows up and runs us through security and out to the propellar plane on the tarmac. It is a 35 minute flight to Salt Lake City.

I have a 2 hour and 15 min layover in SLC. I get myself a bite to eat and since I was tired of my book I had with me, I picked up a Hollywood gossip magazine for the next leg of my flight. It was another short jaunt down to Las Vegas with yet another layover and I thought a few articles about what Jennifer Aniston was doing these days or how Rebecca Romijn's pregnancy is coming along would tide me over for a while.

However, when I sat down on the plane, I was sitting next to a nice older man in a white shirt and tie. After I chatted with him for moment, he asked if I was LDS. He was too and he had just retired from a 39 year career as a Seminary teacher and CES Coordinator. I told him that I, too, was teaching seminary and we chatted about that for a few minutes. Then he got out his Ensign and started reading conference talks and I realized I couldn't get out my magazine featuring Britney's recent weight loss and bikini pictures. So out came the library book again.

After my layover in Las Vegas, I started my last leg of the trip home and it was now the middle of the night. Suprisingly, I wasn't the least bit sleepy - I usually fall asleep in the car, the bus, the plane . . . anywhere. I was wide awake, but at least I still had my hollywood trash magazine to keep me company. I turned on my overhead light and it didn't point toward me and it wasn't adjustable. It pointed straight into the face of the lady sitting next to me who obviously wanted to go to sleep. So I turned the light back off and sat in the dark. I guess I'll never know what is going on in Hollywood this month.

It is roughly a 13 hour drive home from Pocatello. It took me 8 1/2 hours to fly home.

4 comments:

CaliZona said...

Oh! This is sad and funny. Maybe hilarious yet tragic,charming and also ironic!

I double-dog dare you next time to ask your CES travel companion (pointing to your rag magazine) if he thinks those are real or augmented...
wouldn't his expression be worth it? Don't they teach you to find a scripture for everything? You could have read your magazine and told him you were preparing a "Last Days" lesson...

Cathy said...

Wow! Almost not worth it to fly! Cute story, so real life!

Lauri said...

You gotta get an ipod for those trips that are too dark to read or you're sitting next to someone you don't want to talk to.

Katie said...

Forget the ipod as my mom suggested. You need a miners hard hat with a flashlight attached to the front.

Next time...bring your Ensign and sneak your gossip mag inside so that's what he thinks you're reading too.