I often wonder to myself how it is I get through life. I take a thousand risks, am overweight, and will drink two beers and swallow all my medication and go to bed. Yeah, not the sharpest tool in the shed, but screw it right? Look, all I know is that when you play hard, sometimes you lose hard, and sometimes you just have to put your legs between your legs and go home.
I did the latter.
I booked an amazing trip to Orlando from here in New York, (god I needed to get away), and planned all these amazing things to do – Kennedy Space Center, Clearwater Beach with Dolphins, Sea Life Aquarium, etc. I booked my car, hotel and flight and was on the plane with $900 to spend. Guess what? Somewhere along the line, everybody grabbed deposit money from me (they never did this years ago), and it left me with -$20 on my card and with the $10 I have in the bank.
God help me, the worst had happened.
There I am sitting outside this beautiful entertainment area filled with restaurants, stands, waterfalls, cobblestone streets and even a working choo-choo to shuttle all the kiddies around and I am on the phone crying my eyes out because I have no money for food, gas for the rental car and no frickin’ idea how I am going to make it with 6 more days left on my vacation. I arrived on Sunday, today is Monday and I have a whole week planned of fun things in Orlando, how the hell is this shit happening???
But what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
Operator: This is Delta airlines how may I help you?
Me: I have no money. I have no way of getting food or gas for my car and I need to get home, I need to change my return flight to tonight not Saturday. Can you help me?
Operator: Ma’am I am sorry but we don’t do that and you have Basic Economy as it is.
Me: (Tears start falling while I am sitting on a bench in a public place) You don’t understand. I have no money for food. I have nothing to eat, I HAVE TO GET HOME. PLEASE HELP ME!!
Operator: I spoke to my Supervisor, and we can get you on one flight that leaves at 7:27pm from Orlando International Airport and lands at 10:00pm at JFK Airport.
I look at my watch: 5:22pm.
God help me.
The following occurred through some miracle of Jesus Christ Almighty God. I don’t know how I get by sometimes, I really don’t.
5:22-5:54pm – Run out of Entertainment Complex (I didn’t even get to go to the Aquarium and that was the whole point of going there in the first place).
5:58-6:20 – Run into hotel, drop by the front desk and tell them to get my check-out ready. Then run to room pack insanely fast and have a beer, (I had to leave three behind, sigh). Check out and leave.
6:20-6:52 – Drive to Car Rental place, drop off car, pass inspection, then get shuttled to the airport.
6:52-7:10 – Run all away across the airport, (the shuttle left me on the other side of the airport and I can literally feel the tears swelling up in my eyes), make it to Delta, check-in and run to the security checkpoint.
7:10-7:25 – Make it through security and jump on the airtrain to the Gate.
7:25-7:27pm – Haul ass to Gate 75 and at the empty gate the attendant scans my Boarding Pass quickly and closes the doors behind me – I am the last one in.
Delta Flight from Orlando to New York at 7:27pm – 10pm makes it on time.
Just another adventure to strike off my “to do list” of the shit I get myself into and somehow got my way out of.
I have to say this though, even though my trip ended and I have to make a ton of phone calls to make sure I get all (or most) of my money back tomorrow, it’ good to be home.
I am here with my friends, my family, my neighbors of Nassau County, and of course Dave.
Home is where the heart is, and in the case of my home, there is no place like it.
God works in mysterious ways, and as much as I put myself out there and in harm’s way, He always brings me back –
(The above song is what made me cry as I descended into New York this evening).