March was significant for me. I had a series of events which led to March being one of the busiest months of my life. I celebrated a birthday with good friends and fondue, pizza, cupcakes, etc, I interviewed for a job across the country from where I am currently living, I started a temp job, I was a bridesmaid in a wedding, I got lost on the way to another interview, and I was a defendant in an arbitration, which luckily I could participate in over the phone.
Much of this required flying around. I flew from Seattle to Chicago, from Chicago back to Seattle, from Seattle to Minneapolis, from Minneapolis to Orlando, from Tampa to Houston, and from Houston to Seattle. So much for watching my carbon footprint. If I had to fly back to Chicago for the arbitration I might have become homicidal.
Somehow turning 32 made me feel older. For the first time in a long time I feel older, like truly this age rather than the free spirited extended twenty something I was. When I got the call on my birthday that Northwestern wanted me to interview for a job I had a phone interview for a month earlier, and applied for 2 months previous to that, I felt like I should go. Surely this was the adult thing to do. What kind of idiot turns down an opportunity? I booked a last minute flight two days after my birthday and felt like I had done the right thing. You never know where opportunities come from. I joked with my mom that I should move to Israel, and then maybe I'll be offered a job in New Zealand. You never know when life happens.
And so despite being in Seattle for nearly a month and trying to regain a sense of life there, I found myself in the airport wondering just what would happen. I got there early, had a decent sandwich, and calmly read while waiting to board. Once on the plane and moments before departure we were told that there was an issue with the plane and a mechanic was called. It would be about 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes they said it would be another 45 because the mechanic was called away due to a family emergency, and they were now waiting on another one. They said that if we'd like to get out and stretch our legs we were welcome to.
I went out to use a bathroom and make a call or two. I was mostly in good spirits because I figured it was nice of them to let us out of the plane. As long as I got to Chicago that day, everything would be fine. It didn't matter how late we left. It was a non-stop flight, so I really couldn't complain.
In 45 minutes they said that they didn't know when we would be leaving and that we needed to get all of our stuff off the plane since we might get another one. I went back on to retrieve my backpack since I had only taken my purse. It was gone.
I told the staff that someone took my backpack and they insisted that I must have moved it. They helped me look for a minute, but I said, no someone took it. It's black, I'm sure 20 people on this plane have black backpacks. Couldn't they just make an announcement at the gate? They refused and said I would have to report it to customer service. What stupidity. Someone just took the wrong bag. I panicked for a mili-second, but realized that I would just have to stalk everyone out there. I eventually spotted it with a young girl who was mortified for grabbing it, especially since her dad took her backpack. What can you do.
They said we would be leaving at 2:30. Plenty of people had to re-book or cancel due to their connections after this flight, but they announced that anyone just going to Chicago was fine and not to worry. We were leaving at 2:30.
So I boarded at 2:15. Once everyone was buckled in and they told the flight attendants to prepare for take off, we sat for another 10 minutes.
And then they announced that the flight was cancelled. We could get on another flight the next day at 6am. That flight was not going to get me to Chicago in time for my 10am interview downtown. It was also already 5pm Chicago time and I was unable to contact anyone at Northwestern to make a change.