as i anxiously awaited her plane to land, i looked around at the other people in the waiting area. i asked the lady next to me which flight her person was on, it wasn't the same one. we chatted briefly about waiting, and how difficult it was. when her man arrived she wished me well. i was touched. i remembered feeling this way often in airports and while travelling, common interests and goals turn strangers into instant friends.
amy's flight was scheduled to land at 11:30, at midnight, it still said "on time" and not "arrived." i began to worry. i noticed a couple near me discussing the same worries that had been going through my mind. we agreed that it was worrisome, but probably the fault of the airport or something (in attempt to quell our worries)... about 5 minutes later they informed me that their daughter had phoned and they were on the ground. she was on the same flight as amy. and again i was touched. i thanked them for informing me.
i breathed a sigh of relief. and i prepared myself for the big surprise. i had been standing eagerly in front of the doors but i decided to hide behind a pillar and sneak out and surprise her. then my phone rang, it was amy. she was calling me from the other side of the wall. i could hardly contain my excitement. i already knew about the delays she had been experiencing and was doing my best not to let on, but it was a challenge. i had made a sign in the event that she didn't recognize me. it had been 4 months since i'd seen her after all.
when we hung up, i knelt down to retrieve my water bottle from my bag. amy had mentioned she was really thirsty. as i was searching i heard a familiar voice, i looked up and she was attempting to leave the baggage area to have a drink of water. i hid myself behind the pole and remained unseen. phew.
after another hour of waiting i had removed all of my outer layers and was camped out on the floor in front of the doors. a man who had been there for as long as i came up to me and said listen, we have been waiting a long time - what is going on!? to which i replied they're having a problem with the baggage carousel. this didn't satisfy him. he was with a young boy (around 5) who was visibly distressed. i offered him to play the vortex game on my ipod. he smiled and sat down next to me and i showed him how to play the game. another 20 minutes or so went by the boy grew tired of the game, when am i going to see my mom? he asked. i suggested to the man that we all sneak into the baggage claims area and look for our loved ones. he was hesitant but with a little persuasion we were on our way.
my phone rang again, it was amy. what a relief i thought, it will be easy to find her. i saw her by the payphones and walked over without answering my phone. she had her back turned to me and i tapped her on the shoulder have you seen this girl? i asked as i pointed to the sign. her first reaction appeared to be a "leave me alone" look, and then when she realized it was me she was happy and surprised. we ended up waiting another 40 minutes or so for her bag and arrived my apartment very late but in good spirits.
i felt fortunate to have many kind strangers in my day and a friend like amy in my life.