For the most part the we stayed hopeful.....as least for the first 4 hours, sitting, talking and sleeping at Gate A22. Then we caught wind of the next available flight to Tel Aviv--Tuesday. "Wait, what? Today is Tuesday. So that is in, like, a week. A week? No way. There's no way. That's an entire week of our trip. What are we going to do for a week?" Those are the kinds of things we said to each other.
Four hours after that (that makes eight hours. same airport.) we were being herded to the front doors where we were to be shuttled to a hotel 15 minutes away. Fifteen minutes doesn't seem like it is too far until you find out there is only one shuttle and the shuttle can only take 10 people at a time.
While waiting for a shuttle I decided to borrow someone's phone to call my parents and tell them what was up. (The reason I was borrowing a phone is they told us adamantly not to bring phones, even for travel purposes. Luckily 12 people brought their phones anyway.) You know how sometimes you think you're okay until someone you really love asks you if you're okay? All it took was hearing my Dad's surprised voice, "Hi Lizzy, where are you? Are you okay," to get all chocked up and weepy. "Yeah Dad, I really am fine. I'm in Phoenix. Yeah, I know we didn't make it very far. Yeah.......yeah, it is sad. Yeah, I guess I'm pretty disappointed. Yeah, I'm fine."
An hour and a half later we arrived at the hotel. The hotel I'm in right now, hiding from the sun. Because like the flight attendant said when we landed here, in a 'bobby don't cha know' sort of voice, "it's just about a million degrees outside."
I'm here. In Phoenix. And I don't know when I'm going to leave. But I do know it will be before the weekend because Todd, BYU's travel agent is a super hero and he's saving the world one booking at a time. Actually it's at least three bookings, because we have to travel in groups of three and the 52 of us will all be split up and sent to different airports across the world, Pairs, Vienna, and Africa. But we'll all end up at the same place. And really it's not so bad. Nothing bonds people more than crisis. And so we're all bonding and being positive and enjoying the free meals we're getting from the airport meal vouchers.
A few pictures of this ordeal.
|Mom and I before I left. She did mountains of work to help me get ready for this trip. Thanks mom. I love you.|
|After being in the airport for nine hours....still waiting for the shuttle to come.|
|Still waiting for the shuttle.|