My day before going to the airport was rather uneventful, so I will skip right up until I actually arrived at the airport to save you some boring stories of me packing last minute odds-and-ends.
When I got to the airport one of my friend’s (Austin) was already there with her mother waiting for our flight to become available for check-in. We waited for almost 30-minutes after when they were suppose to have started checking people in for the customer service helpers to arrive, but once they did we quickly got our checked suitcases sent off on their journey and were pointed in the direction of security. Like any mother, both mine and her’s did not seem to want to leave us but as we got to security they said farewell and we headed into the security department.
Security was easy to manage except for the horrendously long line and the amount of crates that you end up needing to put your things in. You would think one or two would be alright, but you have to put your electronics in one crate, then your bags in another, liquids, jackets, any jewelery or things in your pockets, and shoes too. Oh, but they cannot be touching or covering anything. I ended up with five crates that I had to load, push through the scanner machine, watch for, and then unload, all while some lady ushered me through a giant metal detector with about as much excitement as a dead horse. Finally we both somehow make it through with all of our items and head into the area for our gate. We were about three hours early so we just waited for the flight to arrive and our other two friends to join us. Meanwhile, I thought I lost my glasses in the restroom and asked a woman if she had seen them, after saying no, I began to search my bags more thoroughly and found them inside where they belonged. Then the woman showed up nearly right behind me and congratulated me on finding them. It was pretty creepy.
Finally the other two (Amy and Libby) show up with about one hour till take off and we all sat and waited. We had not seen each other all summer, besides a sighting across a field by Austin and Libby a few weeks ago, and Amy and Libby hanging out sporadically over the summer since they only live a few minutes from each other… Ok, so I had not seen any of them all summer.
Finally we boarded the plane and the stewards went over all the flight safety tips about how you should keep your seat belts buckled and that there is a life jacket under your chair. We then took off into the sky and began our journey to the land of our founding fathers’ founding fathers. We talked about dull things like TV shows, movies we could watch, how many times Bryce Harper (a player for the Washington Nationals team) got home runs, etc. And once we had eaten our amazing (for an airplane) dinner meals, which by the way included marbled cheesecake, we sat in silence for a little bit as we were going to watch movies, read, or whatever to begin trying to fall asleep. Austin watched a bit of a movie and then put in some music and tried to fall asleep. Amy and Libby watched movie after movie, and I attempted to watch a movie but my screen would not play an image for longer than two-seconds. I also tried listening to books or music, but the machine kept squeaking into my ear.
None of us ended up sleeping a wink. That’s partially because I could not sleep so I would purposefully engage the others in conversations. This plan to make someone stay up with me worked until there was about two hours left and they actually wanted to sleep. I was stuck sitting there, staring at a blank screen while they tried to doze off. It was like some kind of nightmare because I could not even talked to the people around me, as they were trying to sleep. Well, all of them except the boy in front of me who just watched the Simpsons the entire plane ride.
Eventually the crew turns the lights back on, offers everyone tea or coffee and a small muffin that smelled like floor cleaner. I ate it anyways. I kind-of tasted like it, but also like orange skittles. Then the plane began its decent into the merry old land of England.
“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends… The mind can never break off from the journey.” -Pat Conroy