Last Day of Vacation Tries to Kill Me: Volume II


Me and Jones at the airport in Aruba. And this was BEFORE we knew what was going to happen to us in Atlanta. Sidenote: no clue who that dude is behind us. Santa, maybe? Not sure.

Because I travel a lot, odds are fairly high that I’m going to run across glitches. I can only imagine the logistical gymnastics that occur on a daily basis for airlines, with tens of thousands of flights taking off and landing each day.

It’s more surprising that I don’t have MORE delays and issues. However, it seems that when something does happen to me, it’s always at the very worst time. Like, say, you’re stuck in Denver with your boss, or, your traveling solo with a four year old and 27 pieces of luggage and you get stranded in New Orleans overnight.

It’s never on the days where I can absorb the bump and go about my life. Ever. Like yesterday. But before we get there, let’s go back in time 9 days…

We were Aruba-bound for family vacation, leaving the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Since we were going to Dayton for Thanksgiving, where said family lived, we decided to fly in and out of there and drive back to Pittsburgh Sunday (today).

Spoiler alert: This did not happen.

During the course of the nine days of travel we had what I like to call some Situations.

Situation Number 1: We got a flat tire on our way out of Pittsburgh. We were already stressed out with preparing to be gone for 9 days. The packing, the throwing out of the things, the making arrangements for the getting of the mail, etc.

We got a late start, because Casey is allergic to being punctual. I’m not kidding. I carry an EpiPen in case he is ever accidentally on time for something.


Thankfully this was within a mile of home, so we were able to limp it back to the house, move everything over to Casey’s Explorer, and off we go!

I only had a level two anxiety attack, well within my normal limits, and we got to Dayton in time to enjoy an amazing Thanksgiving dinner with family and friends.

Situation Number 2: Our flight on Saturday morning was at 6:00 am, not 6:25 am, as I had insisted. However, we did not miss the flight and I think that’s what matters and some people just need to really let this go. We ALL had boarding passes and I’m not the only one that can read, OKAY?

We were then Situation free for pretty much the entire week in Aruba. Sure, there were the garden variety issues that come with spending seven days with a large amount of people, but no one died and there was almost no blood. All in all, it was a truly blissful week in paradise.


I never tire of taking pictures of Christmas decorations in the Tropics. Ever. Especially with these cuties.


I love an excursion. We had a great time riding horses around the island, and no one got hurt. Badly. Like, to the point they had to see a doctor.


The whole gang on our last night in Aruba. We managed to not toss anyone overboard! #winning

Then the humdinger of all humdingers, Situation Number 3.

We were all traveling home Saturday. We were flying Delta through Atlanta to Dayton, and Casey’s Dad, Mom, step brother and his family were all flying United through Chicago. Turns out, it didn’t matter where you flying from, you weren’t getting to Dayton.

Apparently Dayton was shrouded in a thick soup of fog that made landing there impossible. Super!

So let’s review.

Travel all day with tired 5 year old? Check.

Already have an almost four hour flight with twin ten year old girls in front of you who would not for the love of all fucking holy stop singing? Seriously. The entire flight. Ever wanted to clothesline a ten year old? Check.

Did said 5 year old fall asleep at the Atlanta airport while you were grabbing a bite to eat? Check.


Jonesy OUT.

Did you have to carry the dead weight of this 5 year old to your gate, which is OF COURSE the last gate at the very end of the goddamn terminal? Check.

Did you, and I mean, YOU, as in me, plan a night out tonight for ten of your closest friends to go see Amy Schumer in Pittsburgh, only to realize AFTER you bought all the tickets, made all the arrangements, etc, that no, you can’t go. Because you’re going to be traveling back to Dayton from Aruba, you idiot. Check.

Were your asshole friends sending you texts and pictures, thanking you for the amazing seats and telling you how funny Amy was? Check.



Did your flight get cancelled at 9:15 pm, rescheduled for 8:00 am the NEXT MORNING, meaning that you now have to drag your tired ass and your tired family’s ass to a hotel to sleep for a few hours, with no luggage, I might add, only to wake up at the butt crack of dawn to DO THIS ALL OVER AGAIN?? Check.


Thankfully, while all of this was going on, I ran into my cousin Matt, who was laying over from Amsterdam to Pittsburgh. WAIT? There is a flight from here to Pittsburgh? Eff this. Let’s just get home and worry about vehicles and luggage later.

And that’s what we did. We got our little family moved to Matt’s flight. He helped carry our bags while Casey carried a still dead to the world Jones.


Family travel-weary selfie! Thanks for helping with the bags, Matt! As we boarded the plane, us in clothes meant for the beach, him in fleece-lined Burberry, him carrying Jones’ Spiderman bag, me weighed down like a pack mule with bags and crushing disappointment, Matt said ‘We look like…McConnell’s traveling’. Yes. Yes we do.

I called my mom to pick us up at 11:30 pm. By this time we had been traveling for over 12 hours (this doesn’t compare to the rest of Casey’s family who had to fly through Chicago and also had their flight cancelled. They decided to rent a minivan and drive to Dayton. They got home at 3:45 am, and last I heard, everyone was alive). 

We got home at midnight. It was all we could do to crawl up the steps and dive into bed. This morning, the fog that effed up our plans enshrouded our house like a blanket.

I didn’t even care. I had coffee. I made pancakes. We decorated for Christmas. I was HOME. We made arrangements to get Casey’s truck Monday, AND, in a stunning turn of events, found out our luggage was actually at the Pittsburgh airport!!

We haven’t picked it up yet, mind you, but it’s here!

So now I’m sitting on my couch, in the glow of my tree, sipping wine and waiting for the Steelers game to start. It’s been a crazy nine days, but all our days are crazy. I’ve learned that surviving the nutso life we have is to just stay loose. Stay loose and drink a shit ton of wine.


It’s the most wonderful wine I mean time of the year!!!!

 I told you last days of vacation SUCKED FOR ME,







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