Time outside Time

2012-07-26T08:34:33-07:00Categories: midlife, quiet, travel, Uncategorized|Tags: , |

“Wherever you’re going, we can get you there and there and there!” exulted the United Airlines on-hold record-a-voice.  Well, unfortunately, no, not on this midsummer Saturday. One packed flight from Seattle to Washington D.C. cancelled; 200-plus people, including me, suddenly stuck in airport purgatory. For half an hour, I thought a few of us were lucky: we were rebooked on a US Air flight, via Phoenix, arriving in D.C. a mere five hours after we were originally supposed to. I sprinted from one end of Sea-Tac to the other, fingers crossed. But the US Air flight was delayed four hours.  The gate clerk ordered all of us United castoffs to go back and start over. Back we went, now with no chance at all of getting a reasonable re-booking. Long story not so short—long time on hold on my cellphone; long time in line—I left SeaTac, now scheduled to leave the next afternoon. And so I had a strange, sort of secret day. No plans. No responsibilities. No one, besides my immediate family and my disappointed friend in D.C., knew I was in Seattle. I could have pulled weeds or caught up on some work. Or caught up on sleep, after a night spent tossing and worrying about waking up in time for the flight that never happened. Instead, I left a note and got on my bike. On a whim, I rode straight to a Columbia City nail shop, where the staff is friendly, the massage chairs are the tacky best and offbeat nail colors [...]