Friday, August 11, 2006

Karma, when it's good

Yes, by now I know that all those scary stories were reality for British travelers, even if not for us over here. Still, on the way home today I got a more stringent searcher, who took my solid deodorant and my mascara. They patted me down and ran the wand over me, too. I think now all that's in my toiletry bag is my toothbrush, a couple of bandaids and cotton balls, and an emery board.

I read an article that said Bath & Body Works had to close all of their airport stores because nobody was buying anything, but really they just need to change their business model - instead of selling inside the terminal where people shop while waiting for planes, have quick curbside shops next to the taxi stands where people can pick up all the stuff that just got tossed! You know if the guys that pop up everywhere selling umbrellas on rainy days ran the airport stores, they'd be right out there with armloads of toothpaste. Someone should start peddling curbside toiletries! Although I suppose if this becomes standard, people will just check their baggage more. Not me. I'm still smarting from when mine got "lost."

I have good travel karma this week, though. My boss was due to leave Newark yesterday at the same time I left LaGuardia, but his flight got delayed and he arrived two hours late. He was scheduled to fly home last night and got stuck when storms hit Newark - said he got home three or four hours late.

Me? My meeting ended early today, so I got to the airport quickly and sailed through security without much trouble, (even the wanding and mascara-snatching was good-natured), got on a much earlier flight, landed a few minutes before scheduled time, and got a fast cab home. Then I found out my mother was coming on an earlier train than originally planned, so I had to rush back out of my apartment, into the subway, and to Penn Station, where I was thrust into the midst of a mad throng of Friday evening travelers - to the Jersey shore, to Long Island beaches, to upstate summer homes, or simply just home after a long work week. There was no way I was going to find Mom, and of course we hadn't arranged a meeting point because I wasn't supposed to be there, I was supposed to still be in Boston and she was supposed to be finding her way in a cab alone to my grandmother's. (I know, she's a grown woman, but she's not familiar with the city and it can be overwhelming.) There was no way I would find her in that crowd. I found out what track the train was coming in on, but there isn't one stairway per track, but several spaced out along the waiting area. Hopeless! So I just went outside, figuring I'd stand by the taxis and hope she would wander by, and yup, with in a minute and a half I saw her walking toward me on the sidewalk. Two minutes longer inside and I'd have missed her.

See, that's good karma.


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