Getting There Was Half the Fun

Liberty Bell

Last week we went to Philadelphia.  On Saturday morning, while we were sitting at the airport in Norfolk, I noticed an odd-looking plane pull up to our gate.  It had wings at the top of the plane, not in the middle where they are supposed to be, and it had propellers.  What was it doing at our gate, blocking the way for our little jet that should be arriving soon?  When I pointed it out to my husband, he looked up from reading the paper and said, “That’s our plane.”

Flying is not my favorite thing to do under the best of conditions, but taking my jet engines away and giving me those propellers instead had me clutching my seat.  And I mean the seat in the airport.  Before we even got onto the plane.  But I was excited about our trip, so I managed to get myself aboard.  George really didn’t have to push that hard.  It was the first time in years that I had to walk onto the tarmac to board a plane.

Our seats were right under the wing, a prime spot to hear the noise and watch the landing gear retract the wheels when we became airborne.  I commented on how loud the engines were, and my husband said, “They should get quieter once we reach cruising altitude.”  I actually liked the sound of the loud engines.  At least I knew the propellers were still turning.

When we arrived at the Philadelphia airport, we again deplaned onto the tarmac and were told we had to take one of the buses that were lined up to take us to the main terminal.  We didn’t know which bus we needed to get on and had to ask several people before we found the right one.  Once we were on, I casually asked my husband if this bus was supposed to take us to baggage claim so we could get our suitcase we had checked in.  My husband looked concerned and told me to hold on while he got off the bus to ask.  I worried that the bus would leave with me and all our belongings, headed to the main terminal, separated from my husband, and I would never find him again.  I watched as he asked an attendant, then saw him motion to me to grab our things and get off the bus.  Apparently, the only people who needed to be on that bus were people who had to catch a connecting flight.  Our luggage was at the little terminal where we were already.

My husband said he had no clue where we were supposed to go to find the baggage claim.  I looked around at the signs and said, “I think it’s this way because the sign has an arrow pointing to ‘baggage claim.'”  I am brilliant sometimes.  I read signs.  We retrieved our suitcase, and the next task was to find a taxi to the airport.  Again, my husband was confused about where we were supposed to find a taxi.  I looked at the signs and pointed to one that had an arrow pointing to a picture of buses and taxis and read “Ground Transportation.”  My husband said it was a good thing he had me with him because he’d be wandering around the airport for hours looking for a way out.  I don’t know why we waste so much time teaching boys how to read.  They clearly don’t use that skill to the best of their advantage.  Oh, yes.  They need it to read the football schedule.

About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
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26 Responses to Getting There Was Half the Fun

  1. Lenore Diane says:

    You crack me up!! And, you type the truth! 🙂

  2. The Guat says:

    HA! This was such a great story. Love it. And yes women are brilliant! I’m trying my best to teach my son that too 🙂

  3. I seem to live half my life in airports so I can sympathise with much of this lovely funny post! I look forward to the pictures!

    • Coming East says:

      I feel,sorry for you! Ken, having to spend so much time in airports. When we lived in Texas, we had to fly to get anywhere. Now that we live in Virginia, we can drive most places we want to go, except to see our daughter and grandchildren in Michigan.

  4. pattisj says:

    I’m so happy to have you back! I didn’t realize you were flying, thought road trip for sure. I could have loaned you a pigeon, sounds about the same size as the plane…Isn’t it great how God pairs us with someone who complements our fine qualities? Or lack thereof? 🙂

  5. YEAH!!! Even W C Fields (a native Philadelphian who made fun of his city of origin his whole life) has as an epitaph, “All things considered, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.” Glad you had a good time and want to go back… can’t wait to hear the stories!

  6. dorannrule says:

    This was so funny! But maybe not so funny since Bill and I will be stumbling around airports in a few weeks time. We feel like lost souls among so many who know exactly what they are doing and where they are going. Thank goodness for the signs that make us women the heroines. Hope you had a grand time in Philadelphia! 🙂

  7. Glad you had such a nice time in my fare city! I am laughing out loud at the thought process behind the loud engine noise….I couldn’t agree more! It’s the silence that would scare the crap out of me!

  8. A.M.B. says:

    I hope you had a nice time in Philly! It’s my hometown. I just had to take a peek at what you were up to on your blog when I saw the liberty bell picture!

    • Coming East says:

      I absolutely loved Philly, A.M.B.! We stayed in the historic district, and I walked everywhere while my husband was at his conference. We used to live in West Chester but moved away 32 years ago. Our youngest was born in Bryn Mawr.

      • A.M.B. says:

        I’m glad to hear you loved Philly (and that you used to live here)! I grew up in Cheltenham, went away for school, and then returned to the area with my husband (who is from Mississippi). We love it here. It’s a nice place to visit because Center City is so walkable, and there are many historical sites, good BYOB restaurants, museums, and parks.

      • Coming East says:

        We intend on visiting again, A.M.B., hopefully within the year. It’s only a six-hour drive from Virginia Beach, and well worth the time.

  9. I love this. Just reading it made these words pop into my head “Sign, signs, everywhere a sign.” You know that rock song? So I typed in those words and sure enough, those are the words. All these years and I finally connected they were singing about “signs.” But your sign after sign narration seemed to fit the beat. (However, “the long hair freaky people” part certainly doesn’t.)
    So after all the signage, the rest of the trip was great? Thank you for the photo of the Liberty Bell. Now, I know you were really there. Oh dear, did you follow me on this comment?

    • Coming East says:

      Yes, I followed you, Georgette, because you left plenty of signs along the way. I don’t think I’m familiar with that song. Now I need to look it up. And yes, the whole trip was wonderful. I’m ready to go back. There were a lot of things I didn’t have time to see.

  10. Dianna says:

    My husband and I are exactly the opposite of you and yours: HE’S the one who leads me around. My “sense of direction” never fully developed: I can’t find my way back to our table if I go to the ladies room while we’re at a restaurant! 😉
    Glad everything went well!

  11. Margie says:

    Men don’t really like to ask for directions, so I guess they don’t read signage either. I think they just hope their homing beacon will guide them.

  12. I love this! I guess we are good for somethings, like reading signs and asking directions! Hope the rest of your trip was as much fun. DAF

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