June 2011 Uganda Trip Day 1

Day 1:

I made it the airport in plenty of time the day I left. My sister brought me up and dropped me off. I was going to drive myself and just leave a car at the airport but I’m glad I didn’t – hauling three big suitcases plus my carryons was not a one person job.

I had a small hiccup at the check-in counter. I was allowed 3 bags by British Airways (yay donations!) but my first leg was on American Airlines. I was concerned that AA might say something about the extra bag so I called them a couple of days before I left to confirm it wasn’t an issue to bring the three checked bags. They assured me it would be no problem. Of course, when I got to the airport the agent put up a stink. My printed itinerary didn’t state I could have three bags. After some back and forth I was finally able to pull up the itinerary on my phone and showed them it said “3”. He was satisfied with that (yay smart phones!) and my three bags were on their way.

I made it to my gate with plenty of time to spare. Shortly before our flight was set to board we heard the news that the flight was delayed due to weather in Chicago. About a half hour after we were supposed to leave they announced we could go, but the flight was overweight. They started asking people to volunteer to give up their seats and were offering some lovely incentives. Several hundred dollars in flight vouchers plus they would put you up in a hotel, give you dinner, etc. I would normally jump on that but I knew this was a crazy busy trip and I was already short on time. ~sigh~ So I whined to my mom on the phone about how much I wish I could do that, then got on my flight.

I only had a 2 hour layover in Chicago and while that sounds like plenty of time, I know from experience that 2 hours can be cutting it short if I had to change terminals (I did) or if there were long lines in security (there were). So with a flight delay…I was really going to be pushing it to catch my flight to London. I raced through the airport, got to my terminal, through security and made it to my gate right as they started boarding. WHEW!

Nothing like a heart pumping start to my trip.

We boarded the plane and I got settled in my lovely, carefully selected aisle seat ready for the overnight flight to London. My time in that seat was quickly cut short when the lady next to me asked if I would mind switching with her husband a couple of rows up so that they could sit together.

I agreed before I saw my new middle seat.

On one side of me sat a large older man and on the other side sat a large middle aged woman.  I hate middle seats.  I hate climbing over people if I have to go to the bathroom or stretch my legs. I hate being squished between two strangers.  I always pick aisle seats.  But nothing to do about it now…. there I was. 

Oh well, I figured I’d make the best of it and just sleep the whole flight. Oh no, no sleep for me. The lady decided she wanted to cuddle throughout the trip. Not only was she half on my seat, she had her head on my headrest every time she fell asleep.   And the old man? Snoring like a freight train. Ear plugs were no match for his snores. So after trying for hours to sleep I gave up and just did some reading, some people watching (ever watch people sleep?  can be quite entertaining) and watched a movie.

Finally, after what felt like forever it was time to land in London. 12 hour layover here I come.


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