Thursday, December 27, 2007

A Jolt in the Journey

Last Wednesday I headed out for Springfield. I got up around 5:30 to make my 8:25 flight. I decided that I could take the subway instead of trying to get a cab. I’ve never been very lucky in getting a cab around my neighborhood that early in the morning.

I’d printed out my boarding passes. I was told by a couple people at work that this would make things easier when checking in. I have to say they really didn’t. Either that or I didn’t do something so it would be easier. American was mobbed with people both inside and out. I wasn’t sure what to do. There was also no one to ask. Finally I just checked in again. I got my boarding passes and indicated the number of bags I was checking. Very quickly my name was called and the luggage tag applied. I walked the bag around to be x-rayed. I dropped it off and then just stood around for awhile. I had plenty of time before my flight was to take off. I watched the progress my bag made in getting x-rayed. It took some time. Bag after bag was placed in front of it but finally it went on its way.

It was time to head for security and the gate. I’m online for security. I get up to the guy and then I get my big surprise. My license expired in June. They let me go but I had to be checked. I was patted down and they used the wand on me and they also tested my shoes, coat, and carry on for any residue. I was told I was fine and that I could go on.

Now how does one describe what I was feeling. How to describe how I was feeling once I got to Springfield. I will just say I had hmm well a little melt down. Ok it was a big melt down. My main concern was whether I could get back to DC. My thinking was that DC is a big airport and Springfield isn’t a big airport. So maybe just maybe they might not be so forgiving and say sorry you don’t get to fly.

My brother found a TSA worker and asked him a few questions. My dad and I waited for my luggage. The time waiting helped me to calm down. My brother and I went back to the TSA guy and asked a few more questions. He asked if I had my social security card with me. I said no and thought to myself you aren’t supposed to have your card in your wallet just in case the wallet is stolen. The TSA guy said they would do the same thing in Springfield as was done in DC.

I decided to have my friend who was cat sitting go over to my house and get my passport and send it to me FedEx. Unfortunately it took an extra day to get out to Springfield because last Friday the city was fogged in and the FedEx plane could not get in from Nashville. I also didn’t realize that a signature was not required so it wasn’t necessary for someone to be at my dad’s house to sign for it.

That was the unfun excitement on trip.

Oh yes and the upshot on the license. Since its been expired for over six months, I have to take a written and driving test to get it back. I’ll start the process next week. I’d thought there was a DMV office right downtown essentially on the way to work but that’s not the case so now getting there will be a little more complicated. I’ve downloaded a rules to the road book but I want to see if there are a sample questions you can look at.

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