Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Surviving the Airport (and Winning Hearts and Minds.)

I went to visit one of my dearest friends in Virginia this week and- I’m proud to report- I got there and back without a single airport meltdown! I met some incredibly sweet people on the plane and had a lovely time in Lynchburg. There are so many things to share, and I’ll be back with more details from the trip, recipes, and stories, but for now- here’s what I learned about flying.

10 Tips to Help you Maintain your Sanity in Airports
(and Win the Hearts and Minds of Fellow Passengers)

1.       Get to the airport about two hours early. You probably don’t need that long, but it will give you a good amount of time to call and inform all your family members that you have survived check in and security. This also gives you plenty of time to savor how responsible and capable you are. Buy a coffee.  You’ve got time! Try to look like Sandra Bullock from The Proposal while you drink it. People-watching encouraged.

2.       Pack yummy cough drops. Use them to barter favor with the people around you. Mine were Warm Apple Pie flavored. Everyone just collectively coughs on airplanes, so share the cough drops. I shared them with one woman and she exclaimed, “Aren’t you a dream boat?!” I blushed shyly, Yes, Mary. Yes I am.

3.       Admit that you’re a beginner. This is the only way for people to know that they need to take care of you. I kept dropping the fact that I had never flown alone and the lady I sat next to on my connecting flight literally walked me to my next gate. I love being surprised by the kindness of strangers.

4.       Talk to the person you’re sitting next to, even if they scare you a little. If the plane should begin to crash you will want to hold someone’s hand and there aren’t that many options. Safe topic? Food. I have a new list of food blogs to check out, and a trusty guide to the best Indian food in Austin. Win.

5.       Pack motion sickness medicine in your carry-on, even if you don’t get motion sickness. Because the person next to you might, and it will be doing both of you a favor if you have the prescription. *I gotta fever, and the only prescription is more cow bell*   

6.       Ignore the people who tell you that you have a better chance of getting in a car wreck on the way to the airport than getting in a plane crash. I don’t know why they think that would make us feel any better. Is it more pleasant to die in a car than on a plane? Sick minds, these people…

7.       Identify what makes you feel “able.” I love having paperwork with me, especially all clipped together with one of those official black butterfly clips. It kind of says, "I mean business." I printed maps of all the airports I would be stopping in and highlighted things. Having paperwork makes me feel professional, and I also feel that I might get some special preference with any airport staff because I can show them that I value their airport and want to do really well in it. Lovely architecture in here. I looked it up online before I came. Heard wonderful things about the staff, too. Would you like a Warm Apple Pie cough drop?

8.       Follow Bob Goff on Instagram. He posts inspiring quotes and generally makes me feel very brave. #bobforpresident

9.       Pack funny paperbacks- Funny because laughter is great, and paperback because it will keep your shoulder from pulling out of socket. I packed hardbacks. Lesson learned. Recommendations? Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling, Through Painted Deserts, by Donald Miller, and The Crowd, The Critic, and The Muse by Michael Gungor. The only downside is you may laugh so hard you snort, and that may make your neighbor uncomfortable. Don’t apologize, don’t try to explain, laugh on.

10.   Memorize this verse: “Now in putting everything in subjection to Him, He left nothing outside His control.” Hebrews 2:8  

One picture from the airport when Robin came to pick me up. He said there were guys around him with little signs, waiting for their girls to get to baggage claim, but Robin had something better. Something he knew would speak directly to my heart.


And that's why I married him.


  1. So glad you made it to and from safely!! Love you!!

  2. You did it!! So proud of you. Robin you are a smart man! Love you both