Holiday Airport Adventure From New Orleans To Philly

Airports can be very polarizing places.


Airports can be very polarizing places. By this I mean, no one feels like they might, maybe, be ok. Most people hate them. As for me, they are oddly a place of Zen. As some who loves to travel and travels often, airports fundamentally mean that adventure is imminent. Either that, or my bed at home, and either way I am happy. It is a place where people converge from everywhere: you can hear so many languages, accents, and experiences. You see clothes, bags and shoes you had no idea were in style anywhere, certainly not where you are from. All of this, I love.

I was lucky enough to go home to my parent’s house in Philadelphia this past Thanksgiving weekend. In all honestly, it was the first time in a long time that an airport has tested my patience. My flight was early in the morning, but I stayed out late to see a friend’s show and woke up early to get to the airport. I checked in, boarded my plane, and fell asleep immediately. When I woke up, we were on the ground. For a second I wondered if maybe I had slept through the flight entirely and that we were already in Philadelphia. Unfortunately, I was not that lucky.

The lady next to me informed me that there was something wrong with the fuel pump, and that the pilot had been keeping everyone up to date. Almost on cue, a voice came over the speaker saying that the problem was still not fixed and that they would be shutting off the plane entirely and turning it back on again to see if that fixed the problem. Wondering groggily how a multi-million dollar airplane and my cell phone could be expected to work the same way, I called my parents and told them I would be late.

Unsurprisingly, rebooting the plane did not fix the problem. Initially, the indicator must have turned off because they re-boarded the plane and disconnected from the terminal but we were soon back where we started and informed we would be switching planes. Personally, I was relieved to hear this. I doubted the problem could be fixed that easily and wondered if my plane crashed on Thanksgiving, would that be considered real irony or would it be more like the Alanis Morrisette kind. You know, not technically ironic, more just a serious bummer.

Needless to say, I survived to make it to Thanksgiving dinner and to writing this piece. It was wonderful, dinner was ready two hours early and was utterly delicious. I printed out my last article for my Bubbie, who cried when she read it and gave me a very wet kiss on the cheek before asking if I really do smoke cigars and if I could please stop doing that immediately.

I am not sure what overarching message, if any, the universe was trying pass on to me this past Thanksgiving. I hardly need to be reminded how utterly blessed I am for my family, for my ability to fly home to them, and for the opportunity to share all of this with you, the Jetset Times readership. Perhaps I was meant to learn that a sense of humor can get you through most anything this world can throw at you. Or maybe the sometimes adversity makes the sweet parts of life even better. Perhaps I was just meant to learn that slow cooking a brisket in the oven on a low temperature to seal in the moisture and then smoking outside on a grill for hours is the best possible marriage between a classic Jewish brisket and a Texas BBQ style. No matter what, I am grateful for this past Thanksgiving weekend, particularly that the flight home was remarkably uneventful.

Hillary Kurland


Hillary is an adventurous traveler, who loves to skydive, explore inside pyramids and is a certified scuba diver. Her favorite travel destination is the one she's headed to next!

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