I am not home yet. HUGE storms on the East coast have completely shut down air travel. I landed at JFK a little late and very hard but the 747-400 put me back on American soil.
JFK must be the worst airport in America . I made it from terminal 4 to Delta’s terminal 2 in epic fashion. Mass confusion due to construction prevented easy passage between these two terminals. Tempers flared as passengers were missing flights despite being in the airport. I finally had to go outside in the rain and cross over the street and only discovered this route after bribing an employee $10 to give directions! I was delirious and arrived at my gate to find that the flight to Richmond had been cancelled (99% of flights were cancelled). Lines and people were everywhere in a sea of frustration.
Luckily before I knew my plane had been cancelled I had perched myself in the last seat at the Todd English restaurant in terminal 2 at JFK with a big fat glass of Chardonnay. I enjoyed people watching and took the attitude that this situation was all out of my control. I had already been traveling for 40 continuous hours so what was a few more? Upon realizing the flight was cancelled I made a few phone calls and decided the train was the best option as there was no sign of the airport clearing that night and I knew bedlam awaited the following morning. I ordered a quick bite of dinner (a fajita) and proceeded to spill guacamole down my entire pants leg. Of course any chance of changing clothes was out of the question as my luggage was MIA!
Thus, after finishing my meal I hopped a taxi to Penn Train Station NYC with another woeful and stranded passenger. I was so cold in NYC I had to buy a “beautiful” black “I LOVE NYC” sweatshirt and the only size available was Men’s Large which came down to my knees! It was so large I could have worn it into LAMU and pass the Muslim attire test.
I finally boarded a train to Washington , DC that was the furthest south any train was headed at that time of night. At the DC’s Union Station the taxi line stretched forever, the rain was pouring down and I happily shared a taxi with 4 other people heading to Alexandria . I was of course the next to the last person to get dropped off after going all over creation to get to the Lorien Hotel on King Street in Alexandria .
I am writing this post waiting for my train to Richmond and an ETA of 10:30 EST.
To add to the drama regard the message that greeted me as I tried to schedule the train from Alexandria to Richmond :
Amtrak Reservation and Ticketing systems are currently unavailable due to upgrade.
On Sunday, April 17, 2011, Amtrak’s Reservation and Ticketing system is undergoing a major upgrade and will not be available for a portion of the day. During this period, Amtrak will have very limited ability to create or modify reservations, provide train status information and issue tickets. Amtrak will not be able to accept credit card payments via the Internet, by telephone or travel agency outlets and will have only limited ability at station ticket counters. In addition, Quik-Trak kiosks will be unavailable during this period.
Ahhh…the joys of traveling yet I still look forward to my next trip!