What people with “exciting lives” never tell you about traveling the world is just how many flights from hell you will encounter. A normal flight from Chicago to Beijing averages 12 hours or so. Now tell me what I did to deserve a transit time of 30 hours? My plane was flying over Oregon when a rude, loud announcement awoke me from my cramped slumber in the plane seat. “….due to water tank issues, we are diverting this plane back to Chicago to switch aircrafts.” So four hours later, I was back in O’Hare quietly sobbing into my Starbucks fruit cup and desperately trying to prop up my battered immune system. An hour power nap on the terminal floor and four hours of twiddling thumbs in the lounge later, I was finally Beijing-bound (again). Yeah, I knew I should have never trusted a plane that didn’t have a personal screen installed for each seat.
Despite the bad omen, Beijing welcomed me with uncharacteristically clear, blue skies and a sprinkling of cotton ball clouds. And I got 10,000 award miles out of the whole ordeal. Still salty as ef though.