Wheels Up/Not Quite

Last month we were fortunate enough to spend ten days in Spain. Please enjoy the recap of our wonderful trip…

Day 1A: Charlotte

Sweet Matt kicked off our Eurotrip by surprising me the night before our trip with a basket full of travel goodies.  Eye mask, head phone splitter, Luna Bars, mini bottles, money belt (I know…we’re huge losers for this), hand sanitizer, tums, wine bottle opener, and a bottle of Cava to celebrate the big journey.  The next day we met my parents at Bricktops for a bon voyage lunch, said our goodbyes and headed to the airport.

And then we were off…kind of.  Our boarding time came and went and was then followed by an announcement that there were maintenance issues with our plane. After a 40 minute delay, they let us all on the plane. Everyone was seated and ready to go, and then another announcement was made that the issues weren’t fixed yet. I could see a mechanic coming off and on the plane, and when I saw the pilot take his belongings and deboard the plane, I knew things weren’t good. After about an hour of sitting on the plane, they told us that we all needed to get off.  There were many of us on the flight that had international connections to make in Philadelphia, and so panic ensued.  Our layover in Philadelphia was only two hours before we would catch our flight to Barcelona, so we knew we would be pushing it. We raced to the ticket counter to see if they could book us on another flight out of Charlotte to Barcelona. No luck. So we waited a little longer until the issue was fixed and we all got back on the plane. With all of the delays, our flight would be landing in Philadelphia right when our flight to Barcelona was taking off. The flight attendant assured us that they would hold the plane for us in Barcelona. Will we make it?

Day1B: Philadelphia

NO. We missed the connection to Barcelona by TEN minutes.  I hate you US Air. It took everything in me to hold back tears. Because we missed our connection on Saturday meant that we wouldn’t leave Philly until 6:30pm the next night, also meaning we missed a full day and night in Barcelona.  Since there was absolutely nothing we could do about it, we took the measly hotel voucher and headed down to baggage claim. Only to find that our luggage was not on the carousel. It was somewhere in the Philly airport. We were told it would be held in a “secure place” and somehow make it on to our flight the next day to Barcelona. Right.  For a company who can’t hold a plane for 10 minutes for an 8-hour international flight, the logistics of all of that sounded way too hard for them to handle. Again, I hate you US Air. They gave us a travel kit and we were sent out into the dark and unknown world of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Matt had a coworker who joined us on the trip and lucky for us, his coworker had close friends who lived in Philly.  By the time the airport shuttle dropped us off at the hotel, his friends were already there waiting to pick us up. They took us all around Philadelphia and did a quick drive-by tour of all of the major landmarks (town hall, love statue, steps where Rocky was filmed). We ended up parking the car and walking to a sports bar to grab some dinner and drinks. When we left the restaurant it was pouring rain and we had a ten-block walk back to the car. Of course it was raining when we had no change of clothes or pajamas or anything. When we got back to the hotel, I used a bar of soap to wash our socks and then dried our soaking wet clothes and the socks with the hotel room’s hairdryer. A modern-day Laura Ingalls Wilder. I got in bed and fell asleep to Carrie Mathison and Nicholas Brody, enjoying our last night in an American bed.

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