Posted January 25th, 2013 by Lisa in Bangor, Wales
When booking flights you never know for sure what could happen on your journey. You hope for the best and pray that everything will go smoothly, but this is not always the case. Going to Wales I was supposed to fly with my friend Mallory from Des Moines to Chicago, to Newark, and then to Manchester where our program director would meet us and drive to Bangor. I thought everything would work out just fine, but that is not quite how it turned out. We ended up being delayed quite a bit in Chicago, which caused us to miss our flight to Manchester from Newark. We sprinted past over 115 gates, but still arrived after the doors were closed. There were no direct flights to Manchester until the next day, so Mallory and I had to fly into London. We had to navigate our way to the National Rail Station in London by way of the tube, catch a train to Chester, and then to Bangor.
At first I was extremely upset that this whole fiasco happened to me. I was mad at the airline for delaying everything and then losing my suitcase (a whole different story I won’t bore you with, but luckily they found it!), I was mad at myself for booking this flight, and I was basically just mad at the world. Then I realized that it could have been a lot worse, and that I should feel lucky to even be studying abroad. I should have arrived in
Manchester at 7:30 a.m. and in Bangor around noon, but instead I arrived in London around 9:30 a.m. and in Bangor around 6:00 p.m. It was terrible at the time, but looking back it was a memorable experience. Had I caught my original flight out of Newark, I never would have had the experience of carrying a 50-pound suitcase, a carry-on bag, and a backpack all the way across London on the tube. Let me you it would have been a sight to see. Two girls who have no clue where they are going carrying all that luggage up and down flights of stairs and on and off train after train was probably quite humorous. We had only slept about 2-3 hours in over a day, so we were rather exhausted. It got to the point that all we could do was laugh. While sitting on one of the trains, exhausted and sweating from walking/running so much and carrying all my luggage, I said to Mallory, “It has to get better from here right? I mean it can’t get much worse!” We laughed and both realized that our adventures while studying abroad in Wales had just begun. I’m going to encounter some bumps in the road, but if I keep going and stay calm I’m sure most of the journey will be a smooth, wonderful ride. I arrived safely in Bangor after more than 28 hours of traveling, and now I can’t wait to see what the rest of the semester has in store for me!