Monthly Archives: March 2010

Not What I Had Planned On

I had a birthday on Sunday…

Having been unable to procure a London flight over my birthday so that I could visit with my hubby for the big day, he purchased a full-fare ticket to Zurich for the day. Just the day! To come see me. Isn’t that sweet?

I had been visiting with my dad just prior. (And my sister in Atlanta before that. My poor apartment must be quite lonely these days!) I flew home to DC for one night to pack my bags full of items Del requested I bring for him. And I knew there were storms coming, so I took a 10am flight the next day. No chances I was going to miss this trip due to a commuting failure!

I got to LGA at 11:30am, cabbed over to JFK and took a nap, etc. waiting around for my 4:25pm sign in. And watched as the quiet crew lounge filled with the bodies of colleagues on delayed and canceled flights. First there was a “decision” on my flight (which means a final decision will be made at that time as to whether it is canceled or not). We got the go ahead and showed at the gate, only to be told we’d gotten a new aircraft, which was then diverted into Philly. They were looking for another. Winds were at around 70mph, the rain was an avalanche of water…so we went back to the crew lounge and waited.

We waited while our flight took delay after delay after “decision” after “decision” after delay (I’ve never even seen sequential Decisions, as it is such a last-ditch effort to begin with). All around us, everyone canceled. Paris, London, Barcelona, Milan, another Paris, another London, Rome…we went from a mobbed crew lounge back down to a silent one – as we were the only flight left hanging in the balance. Why were they so damn determined to get THIS flight out? I have no idea. I can only imagine that we had diamonds in our cargo shipment or…I can’t think of anything else crazy enough. (*Skip below for airline intrigue.)

They held us until 10:30pm, sending us back to the gate for what was now the 4th time. We got on board and found water gushing into the back galley. With only 30 minutes until the pilots finally went illegal, it was not humanly possible to have Maintenance investigate, load the pax and shut the door. So, after all that, we canceled.

This – the day my hubby and I laid out $375 for a layover – was only the 2nd time in 11 years of international flying that I’ve had a flight cancel! (And Swissair was completely useless, charging us so much to salvage the ticket that we could just buy a new one for the price.) *sigh* Add to it that as we walked off the plane, some passengers found it appropriate to scream at us, calling us a$$holes and all sorts of things – as if I hadn’t been sitting around for 11 hours myself! Unpaid! With a violent storm raging all day before them. I guess we’re jerks for “not trying”?

But (for the record) I had a nice birthday anyhow, with friends. Hubby was disappointed (but I’ve popped off to the UK to surprise him for a super-quick visit. I’m exhausted, but it’s worth it!). What a way to start the year.

* Word has it that a particular flight regularly carries currency in its cargo – to Moscow. Thus, it has been called “the safest flight in the industry”. (If you were a terrorist, would you pick a plane full of money belonging to undisclosed Russians to mess with?! ) So it’s interesting to note that, on this day, when pretty much every flight canceled, this one Moscow flight loaded up passengers and circled the runway, waiting for the winds to drop enough for takeoff. The plane was rocking so hard from the winds that it gave up, returned to the gate and unloaded the passengers. While this happened to a number of flights that the airlines tried to get out that day, this flight did not actually cancel. The airline just took off the passengers, ordering the crew to fly the empty plane to Mocow anyhow.

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The Mystery Continues

My MRI was late last Wednesday night. Sorry to keep you waiting, but I braved another snowstorm to be a good girl and get to work the next day (for a trip that ended up getting delayed until 2am, but that’s another story).

May I just say that an MRI is more bizarre than I remembered? I don’t think I was ever so far into one, nor for so long. (Or perhaps my memory fails me. Entirely possible.) As I lay there, I could not get over the absurdity of the disconcerting noises that thing makes. It actually made me giggle, as I could not begin to imagine what was happening inside there to make such cacophony necessary. It’s like a frantic construction site crashing down around you. The noises alternate between car alarm, giant electronic quacking duck, jack hammer and the beginning bars of Gaga’s “Poker Face” (which made me do some humming, with a smile).

When I returned from my trip, the doc had left a message. The good news is: the test was clean. 100% no cancer. The bad news is: the test was clean. No DDD. No…anything.

So certainly I am happy. But I’m also a little frustrated. I now have a great fear of becoming one of “those people” with life-long back pain. Always something I can’t do. Always something wrong with me. Yuck. It’s jumping the gun a bit, but you know, cancer already made me feel old. But at least I got rid of that. (Yeay!) I’m itching to be able to exercise. At the moment I can’t even bring my feet to my chin, it’s been so long since I’ve even been able to stretch properly. (For the record, I discovered this when I tried to investigate if I’d stepped on something tiny.)

I’ve been referred to the orthopedic department, to which I can’t get an appointment before April 8th! (Who says you never have to wait for medical care here?! I want to whip them.) Of course, I’ll try to see if any strings can be pulled, but the doc said it’s not considered urgent so…we’re not sure that will happen.

Meanwhile, I have managed to work a trip. It wasn’t comfortable and I need help with my bag, but it was manageable. Good thing I’m on part-time the next few months after all.

I’ll let you know about the next steps. Meanwhile, this has put me in the mood to watch a little Poker Face video. You know, so I can have that nostalgic stuck-in-an-MRI feeling.

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Filed under breast cancer