Saturday, August 8, 2015

Bad Times, Good Times

I had set the alarm for 4:00 a.m. My early morning flight to South Carolina left at 6:55 a.m. The suitcase had been packed Thursday night and the only things left to do were set up the extra kitty litter boxes, write and post the Blog entry, shave shower and get dressed, hen leave for the airport.

I did all those thing, but I noticed it was getting late, so I hustled. Some things got missed (the Better Made chips are still sitting on the kitchen table, for example). But I got to the airport, found a parking spot, got into the airport and up to the ticket counter at 6:20 a.m. exactly.

I did the kiosk thing to get my boarding pass and the machine said it was too late to check my luggage! WTF? So, I asked the very helpful guy behind the counter, “WTF?”

So, He got me booked on the next flight to Charlotte. But couldn’t find another flight to Columbia that wasn’t full until 6:10 p.m. So, he put me on standby for the 1:10 p.m. flight.


Sidebar: I have never missed a flight nor been on “standby” my entire life.

I had about an hour to kill so I went to the National Coney Island and got breakfast: two eggs over easy, sausage hash browns and rye toast. It was good, but my stomach was in knots and I only ate about half of it.

The flight to Charlotte was uneventful. Then I had two more hours to kill. So, I walked over to one of the US Airways “help desk” and asked how this whole standby thing works.

She explained I had to be at the gate when they boarded (standing by, LOL) and once they boarded, if any seats were left, they would start going down the standby list, calling your name once (and once only). If you were lucky, you got picked. If not, you were screwed.

I was in constant contact with Jake and Carla, BTW and got a few inspirational texts from Vicky. She had sent a text asking if I made it yet, so I filled her in on the situation.

I was sitting there waiting and made up my mind that, if I missed my flight, I would just rent a car and drive the remaining 1 1/2 hours. I didn’t want to sit there for 6 more hours and then inconvenience Jake and Carla by making them drive to the airport at night.

Sidebar: Jake later told me he looked it up and renting a car one-way from Charlotte to Columbia would have cost me $370.00! I could have gotten it for $39.00 a day, but I would have had to return it to Charlotte. He said a taxi would have cost me about $100, but I never thought of that.

So they were boarding and I ws standing by. My stomach was in knots again.

Sidebar: There’s an app for this and Carla was watching it all unfold real-time. She said there were two people on the list ahead of me, but they both went away shortly before boarding.

Finally, the lady called out “Goerlich?”

She mangled the pronunciation, but I could have kissed her. She said, This is an exit row, do you mind?” I replied, “I’ll sit on the wing if you just get me to Columbia!’ She laughed.

The short flight to Columbia had a lot more turbulence, but we made it okay. I retrieved my bag and waited for Jake. I took stock. I was hot, tired and my clothes we all wrinkled, but I was here!

Jake and I talked all the way home. I got my usual warm greeting from Carla and Whiskey and then changed clothes and got my room set up.

Jake was working on a thesis so Carla and I watched TV.

Later on, I took on my favorite role: sous chef for Carla.  I chopped up peppers and onions while she made brats. I sautéed the onions and peppers, plus some garlic near the end). Their oven is broke (a replacement one is on the way) so Carla toasted the buns in their panni press.

Dinner was brats in buns, topped with the onions and peppers, and some hot mustard. Kettle chips and a McClure’s spicy pickle.

Jacob unveiled his thesis movie: Peter Pan, Psychopath. It was brilliant (if somewhat twisted). By the end, I was convinced that Peter Pan really was a dick!

We all watched more TV and talked until bedtime.


  1. The Road Runner just ain’t right, either. Don’t even get me started.

  2. Congratulations on a safe trip.....when were you going to tell me you were leaving?