Back in June when my husband, The Prof, and I were returning for a visit to Quebec followed by a few days in Connecticut and New York City, we were scheduled to fly out of LaGuardia one morning and get home maybe six hours later – which considering that we live a part of the world where airline travel is still something you usually drive a car 80 miles to experience – was a pretty good deal.
Or it would have been if the airplane we were scheduled to fly out on hadn’t been struck by lightning on the way in.
We were sooo close to getting on the plane – and then, whoops, the loudspeaker informed us that we would all have to be rebooked. All 220 or so of us. I didn’t rush to the ticket counter with at least 100 others. I sat right where I was and called the airline on my phone.
Astonishingly, by the time I got through the phone tree to a real person, we had already been rebooked – to Dallas.
Dallas is about, oh roughly, a thousand miles from where we had been going, which was Chicago.
“No problem,” the nice lady on the phone told us. “You’ll get there tonight.”
“And the rest of the way?” I asked, because there was a ‘rest of the way’ short flight we needed to take as well.
“Oh, certainly,” she said with terminal good cheer.
Sceptically, an hour later we boarded our flight. To Dallas.
We have a daughter who lives not far from Dallas. I called her from the airport when we arrived and said, “Guess where we are.” "And, “No, don’t bother to come to the airport. We’re leaving again.”
As indeed we did. And quite amazingly, we got to Chicago in time – barely –to catch the late night commuter flight home. Clockwork – as promised.
Except for the luggage which had gone straight to Chicago on someone else’s flight and beat us home by several hours.
But the detour, while meaningless in terms of the flight (other than some extra miles on our frequent flyer accounts, brought an unexpected bonus.
We got to watch an in-flight movie we never would have seen otherwise. We got to watch it in silence because we didn’t have headsets, but it was intriguing enough to make me pick up a copy of the DVD when it came out.
If you have not watched Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, give it a look. It’s a quiet little film with some interesting things to say, an unexpected hero (played unexpectedly by Ewan McGregor), a heroine who could work in the Good Cheer Department of our airline (Emily Blunt), a seriously handsome Egyptian actor (Amr Waked) who is called the “George Clooney of Egypt” – or so they say, and as the British Prime Minister’s press person, Kristen Scott Thomas, who was perfect and perfectly funny.
It looked good without the dialogue. It was better with. And we had dinner last night with friends who live in Oman who had seen it there and were equally impressed.
I doubt I’d have picked it up without my ‘detour’ to Dallas. I’m so glad I went there now! Let me know what you think if you’ve seen it. And if you haven’t, take a chance on it. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.