I hate early morning flights passionately, but they’re usually the cheapest, at least when I need to book them, so I hop on and catch up on the sleep I missed out on because of my last minute packing, snack shopping, and bullshitting in the streets. This particular morning though, when I needed to leave for Florida to take a flight to Bogota, everything that could go wrong…well, did.
Standing at the counter, checking in an hour before my flight, I reached for my passport. The little fucker wasn’t where I thought I put it, then I remembered not putting it there. I remembered looking at it sitting on the dresser and saying to myself, “watch me forget this.” Well, I was right. I called my friend to go grab it for me and bring it back, knowing with LA traffic, this would take forever, and making my flight would not be happening.
Standby. Hello, old friend. The problem with standby on a Wednesday out of LAX on United is always a bad idea. Everything is oversold! I attempted it anyway, probably because I love punishing myself. Denied a seat. The two hours that followed saw me sitting in a terminal, looking for a cheap ticket to Orlando. Finally, there you are, for $250. Luckily, I was able to get a credit back from United to use toward a future flight, but only after paying a $200 change fee.
The good news is this fuck up gave me enough time to get a much needed haircut before my new 9:05pm flight. And eat some amazing Mexican spot in North Hollywood my friend refuses to tell me about.
Bam! Haircut, full stomach. Now back to the airport in enough time to check in, get situated, charge my laptop, and breathe. Two hour delay! What!? Son of a whore! Did I mention it’s Frontier Airline? If you thought Spirit was bad, you should try frontier. I sat in the middle seat, next to a man who needed to go to the rest room every time he saw me going into a deep, comfortable sleep. I imagine, based on the smell when he returned, it was diarrhea. After the third time, he and the man in the aisle seat switched.
Finally, hello Orlando. Let me grab my bag from the carousel and head to ticketing to get situated and get to the gate to meet up with Skip. There’s a problem! Or course there’s a problem. The kiosk won’t print my ticket, and it’s telling me I need to see a ticket agent. I do, and I’m told I can’t enter Colombia on a one way ticket. WHAT!? Is this written some place? I haven’t seen this so-called fact anywhere. But fuck it, what can I do. I didn’t come all this way to stick around Orlando. I buy the return ticket, plus pay these Spirit Airline devils my baggage fee, and head to the gate.
Maybe I’m crazy. What if all these things was natures way of keeping me out of Colombia? Fuck, if I die, know I gave it my all! Hahhaha.
Darnell Lamont Walker, a self-professed traveling foodie, has been found sitting at tables eating baby goat sweetbreads, drinking tequila, and laughing loudly with strangers. The writer, filmmaker, artist, and sometimes photographer puts happiness above all.