Everything was planned out perfectly.
My wife found a train that left the station near where we live roughly three hours before our flight to Toronto from Logan Airport. We could get on the train, and my housesitting mother could drive our car back home.
And then the announcement came that the train was delayed, not a a few minutes, but by a long time.
It was long enough that my wife eventually asked if I wanted to just drive to the airport, and although morning driving into Boston is not always enjoyable (and it would mean my mother would have to drive back to our house from Boston, not something she wanted to do, hence the original train plan), I said yes.
Later on, my wife admitted she suggested driving because she knew waiting for the train would make me paranoid that we were going to miss our flight.
In reality, we probably weren’t in any danger of that happening. The adventure would come later that day.
* * * * *
In his “Funbag” column on Deadspin today, Drew Magary agreed with a questioner that the most-angst-filled part of flying is dealing with the overhead bin.
While I hate the waiting and the shoving and the panicking over whether there will be enough room in the overhead bin — and hate myself for having started to use it myself, but the hours of trying to find a place for my feet were eventually more than I wanted to bear — at least by that point, you’re actually on the plane.
Before that, you have to get to the airport and go through the license/passport, bag check-in and boarding pass shuffle at the counter. And I say that as someone whose wife basically handles all those logistics and just hands me what I need. (Like feeding myself and paying my bills when I was single, I can get myself through the airport, but my wife is so much better at it.)
Then, of course, there’s security. Do I have to take off my belt or not? Do I have to take my iPad out of the bag? Is the person in front of me clueless? How about the person behind me? Will this be the time they decide my bag needs another look? (It’s mostly socks, underwear, a baseball hat and a Kindle, folks.)
But worst of all, how long is the line, and how quickly is it moving? Am I in Dublin, where I have to go through Dublin security, American security and Customs? And how does all that compare with the time left before boarding?
The one good thing about the whole process that I’ve seen on recent trips is that airport workers will come around as times for the various flights get closer and bring people to the front of the line if they have to, but I only really start to relax when I’m through security with all the stuff I started with and we’ve found our gate.
It’s then that I know I’m going to be on the plane, and that I won’t have to do all sorts of reshuffling after missing a flight — although let’s be honest, my wife would be figuring all that stuff out as I panicked and cursed the fates.
It’s just in time for me to wonder if there will be any space in the overhead bin.
(Photo is Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport. Published on Wikipedia by Citizen 59.)