Getting Out of New York City

Over the coming days you'll read stories and see pictures from my recent visit to Bermuda. It was colorful and pure joy.

But before I can do that, I have to get home. And, as anyone who needs to use air travel these days will tell you, that's no easy task. There used to be a saying, "as busy as Grand Central Station." Well, I've been to Grand Central Station, and it feels tame compared to any airport check-in counter where travelers are jockeying for any flight that will deliver them from the tedious torture of airport madness.

When I left the ship this morning, I had first class tickets to San Francisco. Now I'm sitting in a cramped seat on a completely different airline trying to eat an old sandwich that costs $8. What happened?

The same thing that's happening to thousands of other travelers: flight delays and cancellations for a variety of reasons - some from Mother Nature, many due to a system that is just stretched to its limits. 

I have no idea where our luggage is right now or when I will see it again. And I feel lucky because we'll actually get home tonight and not have to sleep in an airport.

No one loves a good adventure as much as I, but if you're not mindful and keep a positive attitude, the friendly skies can tarnish your fond memories of exploration even before you wrestle your luggage off the spinning carousel.

Speaking of which, I hope to get back to anecdotes and images of Bermuda in the next day or so. Stay tuned. Now, can I have another of those $5 warm beers? 

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My worst travel trip was when I came back from Vancouver 3 years ago, and we had to change plane in Montreal airport. We lift off on Friday night in Vancouver at 11PM local time. We landed in Montreal at 7AM on Saturday in a snow storm. I had a plane transfer there to my final location, but due to the storm, all departure were cancelled. So I after waiting for information on when a plane will leave for an hour, I decided to get the train to Rimouski. The train departure was only at 6PM on Saturday, normal arrival at 1AM Sunday morning. Snow related problems happen to the train, slowed it, and we arrived a 5AM on Sunday at Rimouski. Took a taxi cab to get home, and realized the entrance was not open, full of snow. The guy who was suppose to clean my entrance had a mechanical problem, and could not open it before the Monday. Makes it the longest travel I ever made! Almost 40 hours in the middle of nowhere.

I can more than empathize, altho NYC (assuming JFK) is especially bad right now due to runway construction. I'd avoid that airport like the plague if possible. (Which, of course, I didn't do a few weeks ago--trying to connect from SFO to Boston--and promptly paid the price.)

At least you're getting home (or almost home) quite soon. The volcano was chaos for those of us trying to go to Europe a few weeks ago, to put it mildly. I had colleagues who spent days driving, or stranded in random connecting cities, in even worse messes.

And you're right -- keeping a positive attitude (or at least a sense of humor) helps a ton. That, and for me: Bejeweled on the iPhone. It's my way of tuning all the chaos out :)