I left Yanbu on the 8th and spent the day/night in Jeddah. As is the norm for me, I didn’t sleep before my trip. But, I wasn’t worried. I would sleep on the plane. That’s what I told myself. I pictured myself stretched out on 2 or 3 seats. Aah, what a dream! Unfortunately, it was not my destiny to be comfortable on that flight.
I sat for a moment, and then he came. Yes, my plane buddy. I thought my plane buddy was Syrian, but then I saw that he had a Galaxy 3, iPhone and a BlackBerry. Yep, he was Saudi alright. But, I digress. Moving on. One of the flight attendants told him that there were other seats available and that maybe he’d be comfortable in one of them instead. I know that he told him that for my benefit. But darn it, he said he’d stay where he was. Great! How was I supposed to sleep, comfortably? Well, it wasn’t about to happen. And so I began…..
That flight was 13 hours. And I was uncomfortable the entire time. I couldn’t really move, but my plane buddy was not phased at all. He slept like a baby. It was really too close for comfort. It was so close I think we might be married now. He elbowed me a few times while he was in dreamland. Must have been nice to sleep, Grrr!!! But when he was awake, he did offer me some of his snacks. Wasn’t that nice? And because the battery on my BB was dead, I had to borrow his USB charger. Well, I had to get something out of this unexpected relationship. Don’t judge me!
Anywho, I got into Washington, DC. I was finally on American soil after two grueling years. It was raining. Life was good. Even going through customs was a breeze. Since my trip to Syria, my life was always hell going through security and customs. It was a most welcome change. I headed toward the terminal for my domestic flight. I walked to the terminal, staring at all the little restaurants and shops. What would I eat? What could I buy? Chipotle, Fudruckers, etc. The possibilities were endless. I settled on a cinnamon pretzel from Auntie Anne’s. If you haven’t had pretzels from there, you must, absolutely have to try one. Mmm mmm good. And again, I digress. I called my family to let them know I was there and I sat. I waited. And as luck would have it, my flight was delayed. The plane was still in New York, delayed because of weather. It was storming pretty badly. I didn’t care because I was almost home. What did bother me was the fact that the goofy airlines people made useless announcements. “The flight to Cincinnati has been delayed. We don’t know when it will be departing.” Lovely! To make matters worse, that goofy lady was hard to understand. Can we please get someone who speaks English or a language that someone understands? Man! These people.
Finally, they announced the arrival of the New York flight and that soon the flight to Cincinnati would depart soon after. I got in line, ready to leave. Get outside and there’s a toy plane waiting. “Should this toy be allowed to fly,” I wondered. Again, I was going home so, whatever, right? Got in the plane and it started raining again. Nice.
Cincinnati, Ohio. I was finally home. I got my bags and headed to the rental car office where I had reserved a car. I drove home, admiring the Cincinnati skyline.
I made it home. Finally. It felt good.