Monday, June 23, 2014

Planes and plains.

A whirling weekend involving impromptu travel plans began promptly at 5:15am Friday morning. I'd fallen asleep only five hours before, the twinge of excitement alive in my stomach making sleep fitful (also to blame: the nocturnally hungry cats). But the adrenaline pumped as my alarm went off and I showered, put on my pre-planned air travel outfit (slouchy dolman shirt, slouchy boyfriend jeans, a study in ultimate comfort) and threw my toothbrush in my backpack.

Arriving at the airport at 6:30am I busied myself near the gate with the iPads available to order breakfast at every seat around. Coffee, bagel STAT. An hour until boarding. Perused internet places, fell in love with some writers, felt even more motivated to write more. Mentally noted some places I could take my characters next time I sat down to write.

Boarding! Got to my window seat, opened my book, and promptly fell asleep. An hour and a half later I woke up and didn't understand why we were still on the tarmac at LaGuardia. WHAT IS HAPPENING?

And that's where everything devolved. We eased back to a different gate due to a mechanical issue with the air conditioning. And then we heard the problem could be solved! With a new part! That would take 4-5 hours to arrive from JFK airport. And so, at 10:30am my 8:30am flight was rescheduled for 5pm.

I was supposed to arrive in Minneapolis at 10:30am, pick up my rental car, and be reunited with husband, band, cool studio/house by noon on Friday. Instead, I did not arrive until well after 9pm. I spent my day at LaGuardia.

The moment that I cracked? I was waiting standby for the fourth Minneapolis flight of the day at 4pm, surrounded by the others from my stranded flight hoping to get on another, when I felt a tap on my shoulder. It was a co-worker who was sweating profusely.
-- Jessica! What are you doing here?
-- I've been here since 6:30am! What are YOU doing here?!
-- I am going to visit my friends in Minneapolis! I thought I was going to be late, I've been running through the airport. Oh, look my zone's boarding! I hope you get on this flight!
I stood there as she scurried to the gate agent. I watched her drag her carry-on behind her and walk right under the screen that had my name listed as #13 on stand-by priority. And then I started laughing. She'd been in the airport for maybe 20 minutes. And she was on her way to Minneapolis!

As I stood by the window to the new gate at 5pm, waiting for my original flight, I started laughing at the absurdity again. That's right: I was laughing to myself, by myself. When the plane pulled into the gate I was quite shocked. I raised my hands over my head, gleeful and unbelieving. IT'S HERE! I yelled. FULL OF GLEE.

Because many people from the original flight were lucky enough to fly stand-by earlier or get another flight or cancel altogether, I had a whole row to myself when my original flight finally took off at 6:30pm. YUP. I slept most of the way, and the adrenaline returned as I stepped off the plane into MINNESOTA. I nearly dropped to my knees and kissed the ground. But that's gross.

I picked out my rental car, plugged my iPhone into the car, entered the address for the house and I was on my way! It was actually quite a beautiful ride as I drove further into the rural countryside. And then, as it grew darker, I remembered my true feelings about rural countrysides: they are scary.

But I arrived soundly at house Pachyderm, a rental living space and music studio, where Nirvana most famously recorded In Utero. The Motion City men are recording their sixth album there. When I entered the house I was met with complete silence (it was empty since they were recording in the studio building). On first impression, the house looks like it was built in the '60s (it was), but not in the woods of Minnesota, more like the hills of California. Perhaps it was because I was just reading about the Manson murders and the death of the '60s, but I was like, this looks like a murder house. There's orange carpeting and floor to ceiling windows. It's so retro California and at night the windows are pitch black and anybody outside can look in without you noticing. These are the thoughts I have. I mean, serial killers live in the woods, right?

Luckily Jesse met me and showed me the rest of the premises, but he had to get back to recording. He told me to relax, swim in that indoor pool if I wanted (it was very inviting after being in an airport all day!), and just chill out. So, I attempted to. The pool is poorly lit and the bottom of the pool is painted black, so pair that with the giant wall of black windows, I was little skittish. But the pool was warm! It was inviting! I got in and dipped under water. When I came back up I heard a BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! above me, like someone running through the kitchen. It ended up being Justin coming back to the house for something, but that was the moment the water grew cold and I started shivering and I tip-toed back to Jesse's room for a hot shower, locking every door behind me. 

Black bottom pool
The house is very beautiful, but, y'know, it's also feels like MURDER HOUSE at night. MIGHT JUST BE ME?!?!!?!

Saturday, my only complete day to be spent in my husband's presence, was a fun day filled with friends. Fellow MCS wives Lindsay and Jill joined, along with our best man Jason, and other new people. There was a lot of catching up and game-playing while the men wrote and recorded. We drank wine and listened to the progress of the recorded songs. I cannot wait to hear the finished versions of these songs. They have me amped. Lindsay and I are already planning dance moves at future shows. When the guys wrapped up for the evening we sat around the dining room table discussing all sorts of topics, but me, I mostly talked about serial killers.

Discussion about some keyboard parts
Takes three men to get this grill to work
Work work work
And on to another subject entirely. It must be noted that throughout this whole weekend, my best friend in the whole world was in labor. I was anxious with updates and I didn't want to go to bed until I'd heard a baby had been born. So around 2am I was able to breathe easy again and let me tell you, as the first of my close friends to have a baby, the photos of that baby made me weep with joy and dance around because he is beautiful and I am so happy for my friend. 

It was a sad Sunday morning, as only about 36 hours had passed, and I was packing up to leave again. Jesse and I made breakfast and sipped coffees looking at photos of our friend's new baby. Everyone else slowly joined the kitchen congregation and then it was time for me to say my goodbyes even though I'd just said hello. 

The drive to the airport quickly took my mind off any melancholy, however, because it began pouring a solid wall of water and my fear-filled weekend ended on a note of hydroplane anxiety. I made it fine however, because I am an excellent driver. 

I boarded the plane on time, it left on time, and it even arrived in New York on time. As I de-planed I noticed my co-worker that I'd seen on Friday had been on the same flight as myself, too. Oh, oh the coincidences--that we must not ignore, because that's the beauty of life, right?

Funny one because I like it


  1. A black bottom pool. All the better to hide the bodies in the murder house!

  2. I wouldn't have been able to handle being in that house alone. When I'm home alone in my well populated neighborhood - and mind you, not really alone bc my two kids are in the rooms next door - I lock all the doors and stay in my room once it's dark out. I'm a baby! I'm glad you got to get out there and have a nice visit, no matter how delayed it was.