THE LONGEST FLIGHT – BY ELLIN CURLEY

My first husband, Larry, me and our two young children, around ages four and nine, were scheduled to fly to Santa Fé, New Mexico for a vacation. We had a connecting flight from New York City to St. Louis, Missouri.

We got to the airport in the early evening and something was wrong with the incoming plane. So our flight to St. Louis had to be canceled. We were put on the next available flight with a connection possible to St. Louis. It was the following morning at an ungodly hour. We decided to take the kids home to get some sleep before schlepping back to the airport before dawn the next day. We were already off to a rocky start.

We got to the airport on time, but our flight was delayed – just enough to make us miss our connection through St. Louis. We got to St. Louis and tried to find another flight to Santa Fé. Apparently this weekend’s Hot Air Balloon Festival was the biggest event of the year in Santa Fé. Every flight was booked. We finally found a flight on another airline — NINE HOURS LATER — around 6:00 PM.

That left us with had nine hours to kill plus two small children and all of our carry-on bags, which when traveling with kids, was a lot.

We decided to do some sightseeing. We took the kids to the famous arch. Walked around. Shopped. We still ended up spending too many long, boring hours in the airport.

Our flight finally boarded and naturally, it was overbooked. The flight attendant offered a free ticket to anyone who volunteered to take the next flight in two and a half hours. My crazy husband raised his hand and volunteered the whole family! He figured that we’d waited this long, we should at least get something out of the lost day!

This part actually worked out well. We had time for a leisurely dinner before we boarded the next flight. The rest of the trip was fun and included a hot air balloon ride.

However, getting there was not half the fun!



Categories: Airplanes and flying, Ellin Curley, Family, Photography, Transportation, Travel, Vacation

Tags: , , , , ,

7 replies

  1. Sort of like a flight starting with a stutter…

    Like

  2. It’s a LOT worse now. I think romantic air flights were always for the first class passengers, never for we ordinary citizens.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We’ve had the same experience. Memorable not in a nice way.

      Like

      • This was only one of many, many airport nightmares. Once we were on a trip through an agency and they screwed up our return flight. We had a ridiculously long flight home starting at 4 AM and ending in a different airport from where we had left our car! And this was with both kids! And ski equipment!

        Like

    • I’m not sure how much traveling with kids I would do now. Everything is harder now. Airports, ground transportation, etc.

      Like

  3. Well it seems to work out well in the end, Ellin. We did a fair bit of travelling with our children. It wasn’t easy.
    Leslie

    Like

    • Traveling with kids is hard to begin with. But when you add in airport snafus and transportation problems, it can be a nightmare.

      Like

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