Monday, November 30, 2009

SBL, the return flight

As I was saying on Wednesday when the Internet got cut off...Our return trip to the airport in New Orleans began with two cabbies fighting over us. The one cabbie wanted all 6 of us (which would have cost us more), but the person at the Marriott told him he could only have 3 of us. So, another cabbie claimed three of us. The first cabbie began to object, loudly, that he was first and should get all 6 of us. Meanwhile, the other cabbie filled his cab and left. Another cabbie came up and three of us proceeded to move to his cab. The first cabbie had already loaded 4 of our suitcases and seemed to think that meant he got 4 of us, all the while making his claim loudly. In the end, 3 of us went in each cab, with the suitcases unevenly distributed. When we arrived at the airport, the first cabbie seemed to think that since he had 4 of the suitcases, he should be paid more. In the end, after Dave had called him on it, he agreed to the posted fare. The irony of all this is that he had Christian music going in his you sense a disconnect here? Then again, if your theology is one of substitution without transformation, maybe not. But, that is a subject for another day.

Because we got done so early, we had quite a bit of time at the airport, so we had one last New Orleans lunch. I really do like New Orleans food; I like spicy foods. So we waited for our flight, some of us reading, others knitting, others napping (or napping while reading...), some trying to make the wireless work (it was free, and worth every penny of it, but no more than that...). Then comes the lovely news that because of a glitch with Airtran, our flight to Atlanta was delayed ½ hour and our flight out of Atlanta was delayed a full hour. We were already getting into Indianapolis at 11:15 or so; now it would be about 12:15. From Indianapolis to Warsaw in about 2.5-3 hours; can you say tired?

The flight to Atlanta was without incident, but once we got there, the gates had all changed. No problem, except that our flight was sharing a gate with another flight. Talk about confusion. One person missed their flight; I think she ended up spending the night in Atlanta. Our plane was on the ground and waiting for us, but we couldn't embark; the flight attendants were still in the air on a different flight. Ah, the joys of air transportation: crowded flights, tight security, getting charged for luggage, late flights, should I continue?

Anyway, when the flight attendants came rushing up, there was a round of applause. They missed the irony, but I can't blame them. They probably wanted to get going as badly as we did. We embarked and left Atlanta behind on our way to Indy, arriving about 12:15. Disembarking, we headed for the baggage claim; we could still get home at a fairly reasonable time—NOT! We watched as another flight's luggage was unloaded within 5 minutes of their landing. We, on the other hand, waited for our luggage to be unloaded for 45 minutes! No explanation was given; we just had to wait. In the end, we arrived home after 4:00 AM EST. Our return trip had taken us more than 13 hours...needless to say, none of us were at work at 8:00 that morning :(

ἐν παντὶ εὐχαριστεῖτε· τοῦτο γὰρ θέλημα θεοῦ ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ εἰς ὑμᾶς. (I Thes. 5:18)
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (NRSV)

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