Thursday, January 3, 2008

Running late

There was something to do with elevators.

I think I was traveling with a group, and took a different elevator from the rest of them. We were very close to, or in, the airport, but I was lost pretty much as soon as I got off the elevator. There was a sign that directed to another elevator, and then down a hallway that seemed vaguely familiar, and then the signs stopped. The people who had been in the elevator with me were a friendly lot and we tried to figure it out together, but with no luck.

Finally I asked directions of a fellow who said I should get to the first floor, at which point I'd have to exit the building and do a sort of U-turn in order to reenter in the right place. For some reason, this seemed perfectly correct to me; in fact, I could picture having had to do the same thing once before. "Ha ha! That's Sea-Tac Airport for you!" I said.

However, once I finally got to the ground floor, exited, and reentered, I saw that although there were counters for checking in, there was a large sign that said "NO STUDENTS." The students, apparently, had to check in elsewhere. Increasingly frantic, I found myself downstairs, trying to get to the correct place to check in for my flight. Although I thought I had budgeted plenty of time, all this wandering was costing me. It didn't help that one of the people I asked for directions (apparently I had wandered into a hospital or research wing; I wondered despairingly whether I was even still in the airport complex) said she always arrived four hours early for her flight. I only had 37 minutes left before take-off, and I hadn't even checked in.

I woke up with my heart pounding. "Like a drum" sounds clicheed, but that's what it sounded like to me as I lay there, relieved, in the dark.

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