Travel · United States

Terminal Humiliation

It is no secret that I am a people watcher, especially when I am at the airport. There is really nothing more amusing than having a beer while waiting on a connecting flight and watching people roam the airport.

I can still recall several people that I have witnessed over the years: the person digging for buried treasure (only to find said treasure and eat it), the person sticking their chewing gum on the arm rest at the gate, and the girl who continually got lost for 15 minutes straight and passed by me 7 times in horror before she finally found her way.

It never crossed my mind that I would be one of those people until Brady and I took a trip to the Carolinas in 2012.

The trip started out just like any other – early flight with a layover or two before reaching our destination. We flew out of Oklahoma City and was awaiting our connecting flight to Charlotte at DFW. While waiting at our gate, I got comfortable in a chair and was watching the news. I always sit with one leg crossed over the other and have never thought much about it. Brady brought me a drink and I proceeded to watch kids take hits off air cans on the news and enjoy my Naked Juice until it was time for our flight. Seeing as my bottle was empty and needed disposed of, I proceeded to stand up, walk to the trash can some 15 feet away, and dispose of my empty bottle.

Rewind back to when I stand up….

I wish I could say it was an uneventful stroll to the trash can, but that was not the case.

In the midst of taking my first few steps, I tripped. I’m a blonde so I really did not put much thought into tripping, well, because… it happens a lot. I giggled and continued on towards the trash can. When I took my next step, I realized that I was about to make a spectacle of myself in front of 200 people.

My foot was asleep.

My next “step” can only be described as a 9-month old trying to walk for the first time. Brady said I resembled Gumby, but last I checked I’m not green or made out of clay. Oh, so my next step, if you will, led to me rolling my ankle, dragging my foot behind me for a good eight feet while mid-fall, and crashing into a pillar. But there’s good news. I was only two feet from the trash can.

I sat there in shock and what just happened and then it donned on me I had about 75 sets of eyes glued to my body with not one person coming to my rescue…not even Brady! My chin began quivering, tears filled my eyes, and out came the pouty lip. I gave Brady the “deer in the headlights” look and that was when he finally walked over and helped me up. Oh, and the bottle you ask? It landed about six feet away from my flailing carcass and that was the last I ever saw of it.

I hobbled back over to my seat on the verge of passing out from pure embarrassment. That was when my audience began coming up to me asking if I was okay. “Mmm-ehhh” was all I could squeak out. Now you care about me? How thoughtful.

At last, it was time for us to board the plane and I could barely walk. Once on the plane, I removed my shoe and examined my lower extremity. My ankle cankle was massive and the outside of my foot was beginning to bruise badly.

Great.

We still had a layover in Charlotte and as the universe would have it, we had to change terminals and walk 900 miles to the other side of the airport. I’ve never been more happy to use a moving sidewalk in my life. Brady joked about getting me a wheel chair, but I assured him that would be much more embarrassing than the actual falling part. I sucked it up and walked.

At last, we made it to Myrtle Beach and the nightmare was over….Or so I thought. For the next four days, we galavanted all over town on foot even though we had a brand new rental car. I was thankful when we got to drive up to Fort Bragg and see his brother and my foot could have the day off.

Ever since then, anytime I fly, I now do a “three-stomp-check” to make sure my foot is not asleep before standing, let alone walking. I have also never flown in those shoes again. I’m not supersticious but I’ll take my chances.

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