Travel Diary Story - Hope Brought Me Home
One thing I forgot to mention in my last blogpost about "Pros and Cons about traveling alone" is that there are a few occasions on which you shouldn't be alone and definitely with your loved ones.. like on Christmas, New Years or.. your Birthday!
And since it's my Birthday is tomorrow, I decided last minute to catch a flight back home to celebrate with my friends and family.
However the quick and usually easy trip, did not go as smoothly as planned.
Here is the Full Story:
At the moment I am busy with a lot of work and travel plans, and I rarely see my girlfriends from my hometown Hamburg. Yesterday, after speaking to them I decided to come home for my birthday and organize a get-together. This was so spontaneous (once again) so that I rushed in the city to get everything done, before my flight the next morning.
I rushed through the streets for 6 hours and right when I was done for the day, I all of a sudden felt my throat hurting and strong back pain. From sleeping little and doing too much, my body responded with catching a virus.
Great! My birthday is in two days, I planned on celebrating into my birthday the day before, I have an early flight in the morning and I am sick. I had no other choice, but to keep going. I took a cab home, packed my luggage (I bought a second piece, because I couldn't fit all of my stuff in one), drank tea, took a pain killer, pre-ordered a cab for 6:00 AM, to make sure I catch my flight at 8:00 AM and went straight to bed.
The next morning I felt worse, but I thought "oh well, I will just carry my bags down, get in the cab and sleep on the plane and be able to rest all day so I can be with my friends at night".
Time Check: 6.00 AM
I carried my bags down, looked at the "my taxi" APP to check where my cab driver was, but it said "taxi cancelled". I tried ordering a new one, but it didn't work. I had no other choice but to carry everything down the road and search for a cab on the main street. I could barely walk, but I was sure that if I made it to the main street there would be plenty of cabs as always.
Time Check: 6.30 AM
I calculated in that there might be traffic, so I wasn't running late yet. But when I got to the main street there was not one cab in sight. Now I started getting nervous, because I had tried ordering, calling and catching a cab outside. Just standing around wouldn't help, so I jumped on the bus that stopped right where I was standing and was driving in the direction of the city center.
Usually in Barcelona there are many cabs on the street and I thought maybe because it's early there aren't any around, but it was still odd to me. I asked the bus driver and he told me to get off in 4 stops, because there was a taxi stand. I thought " I will be a little bit in a hurry, but that's ok". When the bus stopped and I got off, I was standing in some street in the middle of nowhere and the bus driver was right there was a sign for a taxi stand, but not one taxi.
Time Check: 7.00 AM
Now the breakdown began. I started freaking out, I felt helpless and didn't know what to do or where to go and how in the world I would get to the airport. As I was standing in the middle of this empty street and after I had asked a baker if he knew where I can get a taxi and he told me that today there are no taxis driving!!!, I cried out of frustration and prayed for help. At that point I had no plan what to do next, my Gate would close in 30 minutes, my flight would be in an hour and I would need 20 minutes just to get to the airport.
Time Check: 7.10 AM
About 10 minutes later a miracle, coincidence or whatever you would call this part happened. A lady stopped at the red light on the street where I was standing, saw me in tears and frustration, rolled down her window and asked what was wrong. I told her I am going to miss my flight because there are no taxis and without hesitation she told me to get in the car and that she would drive me and I could pay her. I couldn't believe it! But there was no time to think. We stuffed everything in her car, raced to the airport and got there in half the time. On the way, my hope; faith got restored.
Time Check: 7.20 AM
When I got to the Airport (Terminal 1) my Gate was supposed to close in 10 minutes, but since I managed to get to the airport, I believed I could still make it. I ran to the information counter and asked where my airline was (I had already checked-in, but still needed to check in my luggage). The lady told me I was at the wrong Terminal, that I had to take a shuttle to get to Terminal 2. At this point any logical human being would have given up, because when you know the shuttle takes another 10 minutes to get to Terminal 2 and my Gate closes in 10 minutes and I still had to go through security, there would be no way I could make it.
But, I wasn't ready to give up, said out loud "it is still possible" and with that thought in mind rushed to the Shuttle area.
I could see the bus leaving, and while I was still trying hard to get there I was having the next mental breakdown. The next shuttle would come in 4 minutes and I certainly didn't have the time. Still, I got on the next bus..
Time Check: 7.40 AM
I got to Terminal 2 after the official Gate closing time. With my last bit of hope I ran to the check-in counter of my airline and the lady told me that I could no longer check in my luggage, but I could try to go through security with all of my bags. I went upstairs, saw the huge line and without thinking went past the people in the line, to the very front, in tears showed the officer my ticket and all he said was "the luggage is too big". I think all the people in the line were starring at me, but I was too focused on still trying to catch that flight. When I turned around the officer was gone and one man who was part of the line told me to just put all my bags on the assembly line, so I did. In less than a minute I got through the security check and even though in my large bag were many liquids, for some odd reason they let me through.
I grabbed everything and rushed to the end of Terminal 2 and downstairs to my Gate.
Time Check: 7.50 AM
10 Minutes before the official take off time and 20 minutes after my Gate was supposed to close, I stood in-front of my Gate and I could hear an announcement "Last Call For Flight *** from Barcelona to Hamburg" and there were two other people going through the Gate. I could not believe it. In tears of relief I went on board, with my huge piece of luggage and three other bags.
Time Check: 8.00 AM
Ready for take off! The plane started quickly, I was shaking from all the stress and could slowly feel my sickness again. Under this kind of pressure I totally forgot how sick I was and I was surprised how I managed to carry all the heavy luggage around and run from one Terminal to the next and through the security check.
But I made it! Why exactly I cannot tell you, but I know for sure that my determination and willingness to not give up until the last second played a big part. There were many points at which I could have let go and accepted that there was no way I could make it, but as long as you believe, anything is possible!
During the flight I couldn't sleep, so I opened a chapter of a book I had with me and as a perfect end to this crazy story, the chapter happened to describe exactly what I can do in this moment to calm down, which helped a lot.
I am proud of myself that I now have a pretty incredible personal real life example of what belief can achieve.
Now I am home safe, I took a long nap and even though I postponed the birthday celebration to tomorrow (the actual day) instead of the day before I am beyond happy to be home and appreciate my bed right now more than ever.
Now back to getting more sleep and recover for by Birthday Celebration tomorrow/today (July-28)
Question OTD: Have you ever experienced something miraculous that would have not been possible without hope?
Much love and health!