Ah, vacation! That wonderful time when you take off and see the world for a week or two only to realize that maybe you should have just stayed at home. OK, maybe I'm being a little sarcastic. As many of you know April, Faith, and I went home to TEXAS for a short visit.
More to come on that later. On this little jog down memory lane I am going to tell about Faifers and my journey back to WA. First, a little background info. So, I have my watch set to Pacific time, because that's where I live and we are flying on Southwest, which is fabulous. So my mom and dad drop us off at the airport in Dallas and like that we are off. Amazingly, for a daddy flying with a kid by himself for the first time, we did great going through security. So we get on the very full plane and off we go into the wild blue yonder. Faith had been playing and running her little bottom off in TX so it was about 30 minutes in and she was out while sitting on daddy's lap. As I looked at my ticket before takeoff I had seen that we were due to land at 1:45. Soon enough we landed in Albuquerque and I looked at my watch and sure enough it was 1:45. Here is a pic:
After we pulled up to the gate, a nice lady helped me carry my backpack off the plane while I carried a bleary eyed Faith. Faith has a super-wet diaper by now and so I am off to find a place to change the kid.
I'm looking around while carrying Faith and I see no family restrooms, so I go into the Men's restroom even though I hate the idea of changing my girl in front of a bunch of strange, weirdo dudes. I'm looking inside the restroom and there is no changing table. I ask the janitor guy where a bathroom with a changing table is. He is talking on his cell phone which I find kinda weird to do in the middle of a men's restroom but, whatever. He tells me that there are none in the Albuquerque airport but hey, there is a nice piece of empty counter over there. Greeaaaat! Against my better judgement, I changed the kiddo on the counter while trying to shield anyone from looking at my half naked girl in the men's restroom. Thanks, Albuquerque! Great planning! After that debacle I decide I am going to find our gate so I know where it is and can do some airport wondering after that. I take ye old ticket out and look at it. Gate B9 it says. I look around and I am in terminal A. After a further look I see Southwest has all of terminal A. OK, that's weird I gotta go to another terminal, I thought, but maybe they have flights out of B too. The kid and I head down towards B. I am letting her walk and get some energy out, but it's around her normal nap time so she is being a bit cranky. No biggie. Daddy can handle that.
I finally find an arrival/departure screen for terminal B. I'm looking and not seeing a Seattle flight. Well, I thought, maybe its too early because I still have 4 hours until takeoff. Right about then a little voice in the back of my head tells me that I should look at my ticket again. Lets see...leave Dallas, check....land at 1:45, check....land at SLC....SLC? Albuquerque doesn't have an "s" or a "c" in it. Hmmmm, sounds like Salt Lake City. Also, isn't New Mexico on Mountain time, unlike my watch which is on Pacific? GREAT PLATYPUS POO!!! I was supposed to stay put on the plane, not get off!!!! It has been about 10 - 15 minutes since I de-planed. Maybe its still there, I thought. So I scoop up Faith who suddenly gets a 'tude and is trying to get down cause she doesn't want to be carried. After, a very brief stop to whisper to her that she was headed down the wrong path, I pick her up again and awkwardly run back toward the gate I left the plane at. As I am getting closer I can see the tail of the plane is still there. Yes! As I round the corner to the gate I see that there is no ticket agent there. Bad sign. However, the door to the gate is open so I charge down the ramp towards the plane. There are a man and lady there. "Can I help you, sir?", the lady asks. "I'm supposed to be on that plane. I got off and I wasn't supposed to!" So the guy looks at me and said, "We just pulled the plane away from the gate and the wheels aren't chocked either. I'm not sure if we can get you on." So he calls and sure enough I don't get on that plane. So I make my way back to the ticket counter in shame. I explain to the people there that I am probably not the smartest person they ever met and can I get another flight, please. Luckily, Southwest is awesome and they hook me up with another flight, but it's gonna be about 4 hours. They then told me about the sun deck/lounge area at the airport "which is a nice place to wait". So I waited there for 4 hours and got a few good snapshots. I got on my plane eventually and did not get off in Denver when the plane stopped, but stayed on until Seattle. I only got home three and a half hours later than I was supposed to.
***UPDATE***: I forgot to mention how big a thanks I owe my mom. In her supreme expertise she packed Faith a little activity kit with crayons, paper, stickers, a puppet, and some snacks. When she was doing it I thought it was another case of grandparents spoiling their grandkid again. It turns out that that move was a lifesaver. It helped me keep Faith entertained during parts of the flight and during our long airport layover. Without it Daddy would have been pulling his hair out. Thanks, Mom!!!! Exactly another reason I hope you have a Happy Mother's Day!
Enjoy the pictures of my fateful stop:
Here is a Southwest plane...possibly headed to SLC?
A airport shot...those clouds are pretty cool
A look the other way. Nice mountains.
This poor guy was caught in a trap out in the afternoon sun.
Faith when Daddy made her take a nap in the airport lounge. She slept for a couple hours.