Day 1 – Louisville to Oaxaca

The adventure begins.

5:00 a.m at the United Airline Gate.  I don’t know where the confirmation number is, I don’t know why my ticket reservation isn’t showing up.   The kind woman trying to check me in assures me we’ll figure it out.

Two bags to check, crammed with stuff Lucia and Julia and Conan couldn’t fit in their 5 bags.  Carefully weighed at home a half dozen times, one is under 50 pounds by a few ounces. The other is three pounds over.

I move the Dominos set to my carry on.  Two pounds down.  I debate ~ do all their socks weight a pound or ~~ ok, sadly, I hand Dee my shampoo and conditioner.  That does it.  But ~

“Oh!  Your flight originates at American Airlines, not here,” says the smiling attendant.  “No wonder I couldn’t find it in our system!”

Dee and I schlep the 100 pounds of luggage to-be-checked, plus the carry-on and backpack with all my stuff, to the American counter.  And whoosh, bags checked, boarding passes in hand and I’m off.

Assuming the position to be x-ray strip-search viewed through security is a little icky,  but they let me through {always a relief} and i reward myself with Starbucks, only because there is no Highlands Coffee or Heine Brothers in the airport.

On the plane at last, I lift my carry-on bag up into the storage area ~ where it doesn’t fit. Bulging with shoes in the front pocket, it’s just too fat to slide under the bar.

No problem, quickly, I whip the shoes out of the bag, stow the bag, and cram the shoes into my backpack. There. Of course the back pack won’t zip now, but I stuff it under the seat.  Hopefully, in case of a wreck, my tennis shoes won’t actually be the debris flying around.

The plane makes some funny noises at take off, but we make into the air and back down safely.  Dallas!

The flight attendant reads off gates for some upcoming flights. Houston – B-10. I say it to myself about 30 times.

Off the plane, I rearrange my luggage and start walking. Understand, I have the carry-on. the  backpack, both about to burst at the seams, a hoodie over my arm, and a thick guidebook to Mexico in my hand, which I had to take out of the backpack to make room for the shoes. I look like I should be pushing a shopping cart.

Just as I’m wondering how far it is to Gate B10, I realize the sign is actually directing me to the Skylink.  I laugh at myself ~ almost out loud.  This is not Standiford Field, this is a massive complex.  And the Skylink is pure Jetsons.

They run every two minutes.  Up in the air, with automated doors and an almost friendly automated voice that warns us, “Hold on, the train is about to start,” and it does, with a jerk and a whoosh.  It almost does wheelies around the corners, zips up and down hills, and then floats to a stop with the reminder to “hold on, the train is stopping,”

I’m delighted.

Until I discover that I’m at the wrong terminal.  Lousville girl here, never thought there might be more than one flight to Houston leaving Dallas.

No problem.  Plenty of time ~ back to the Skylink, which still makes me smile ~ and on the right terminal.  And more Starbucks.

Another pleasant flight, my luggage fits the space exactly, my seat-mate and her young son are pleasant, and I enjoy the lift-off.

Houston is even bigger.  I start this blog post in Houston, thinking “I’m going to be here for a long time.  I’ve been here days already – ok, 5 hours, and three more to go”.

I get some money changed, wander around a bit.  Can’t find my flight on the displays for a long time, but it finally shows up, and I get to take their version of Skylink.

Check the duty free corner – not much to get excited about.  If i still smoked, i could get Marlboro’s for $35 a carton – this is a deal?  Sheesh.

Eat a Bluebell ice cream.  Wander. Work on blog post.

Realize I don’t have my cell phone.

OMG!  Instant panic.  I’ve been carrying it attached to my waist, in the little nerdy carrying holster.  It’s gone.

Not in my hoodie pocket – one empty, one has water bottle.

Ok, trying not to panic.  The dark-haired woman working the duty free kiosk shows me where to call lost and found.  While I’m waiting for them to answer, I say to her,  “But I really need someone to call my phone, maybe someone has found it and I can meet them and go get it.”

Nodding understanding, she whips out her own phone and calls the number I give her – in the meantime lost and found answers and I start to explain what happened when ~~

I hear it.  I hear my phone ringing.  Music to my ears.

I look around ~~ where? ~~ how??? OH!

In my pocket.

My hoodie pocket.  With the water bottle.

I apologize to the Lost and Found woman, and laugh with the nice woman  who’d called me, my laughter is joyful relief and a touch of  feeling foolish.

She smiles, and says with a nod at my phone, “Remember that number, the number I called you from, I’m going to call you from time to time and just check on you, see if you have your phone.  We all need someone to check on us sometimes.”

With those wise words to take with me, i wait some more, and check email, and wait and read and wait and eat dinner and wait and then they say the flight is delayed half an hour for weather, and the gate changes, and i wait and at last ~

We board the tiny plane for Oaxaca.  YAY!!

The longest flight of the trip, 2 hours and 12 minutes.  I have coffee and skip the $8 snack.  i’m so excited, and nervous and glad to almost be there!

It’s dark and pouring down rain when we land, but I don’t care.  I pull out the hat that Dee has lent me for the trip and pop it on my head.  At least my hair will be dry.

I’m in Oaxaca.

About Fausta

Trauma sensitive Consultant and Coach for Compassionate professionals who experience second hand trauma and are at risk of burnout so they can keep doing the work that matters to them and to the world.

Posted on August 12, 2012, in Trip to Juquila and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. oh, a delightful post of your first day…thank you for opening the door and letting us peer into your time away! Have fun, be safe and hug everyone for me, too!



  2. PS…I LOVE how the helpful lady said she’d call you for time to time…”we all need someone to check in on us from time to time. neat!


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