Get Me Some Ear Plugs Before I Pull My Hair Out!!!

After coming to the realization that I HAD to return home...and leave my baby in Washington, D.C., Robby and I prepared to leave. But not before having one last meal together.  Caitlin met us at our hotel for breakfast before heading out for her orientation activities that day.  I was definitely going to miss Caitlin; I was used to seeing her every weekend.  Trying not to focus on the "negative", I assured myself that I would be flying back soon to visit her...even if the weather here was less than desirable.

If the plane trip TO D.C. was an indication of every good omen and positivity, the trip back was beginning to shape up to be the EXACT OPPOSITE.  We flew into Ronald Regan and were scheduled to fly out of Dulles.  The trip into D.C. to our hotel took about 5 minutes tops.  As we got into our ride heading to Dulles, we kept driving...and driving...and driving; for about 30 minutes to be exact.  Exiting the car, our driver informed Roby that his fare would be 67 dollars!  OH MY GOSH!  THAT'S when it occurred to me that the guy at our hotel did not hail a taxi for us, but a car...Note to self:  ALWAYS insist on a taxi; their rates to and from the airport are fixed.  There was no curbside check-in today, so we headed to the counter to leave our luggage.  That's when we found out that the plane we would be returning on would not be a big plane, but a regional jet...GREAT: that meant that not only would we not be getting anything to eat, there would be no in flight movies and really crowded leg room.  This day was going nowhere FAST.  We were told that if we could make it to the counter 40 minutes prior to our flight, we could get the exit aisle seats, thus having a little more leg room.  Robby staked out the counter and did just that.

After securing our seats for the flight, we decided to go purchase food to take with us.  That is when I began to get a headache...a possible migraine.  There could be several possible reasons for the headache...I had not slept well for the past two nights, the cold weather had finally gotten to me or perhaps simply the stress of leaving my baby girl in this big city.  Whatever the reason, I reached for some prescription medication along with Advil and popped them in my mouth.  Within about 10 minutes, I was beginning to feel the effects of the medication and walked over to board my plane, with the hopes of sleeping for the next 3 hours.  I made my way to my seat, leaned back and shut my eyes as we prepared for take off.  That's when I heard it...the most annoying sound!  Two seats in front of me were 2 women sitting side by side; one could not be heard saying much, while the other one...OH MY GOODNESS...there are hardly words to describe her talking.  Her voice was VERY loud, with a tone to it that would wake the dead and in addition to that, I believe with all honesty, I can say I have never heard anyone speak at that rate of speed before.  And I'm not sure if any of you have ever experienced this before, but the more I noticed it...the more noticeable it became.  I began to get really edgy; to the point of finally thrusting my hands over my ears and squeezing my eyes shut...I felt a "SHUT THE HECK UP, LADY" coming on.  That's when my dear, sweet husband (his snoring the result of my sleepless nights) glanced over at me quite calmly.  I noticed he was reading a book on his i-pad...how the heck could he CONCENTRATE with all that talking going on?!  Noticing my hands covering my ears and the distressed look on my face, he asked if I would like to use his earphones; "YES!"  I shoved them in my ears as far as possible, without damaging or bursting my eardrums and I'll be darned...I could STILL hear that woman's incessant talking!  I jerked them out and said, "This won't work...it doesn't drown her out."  Then, he suggested that he put a little music on from his i-pad and I agreed.  FINALLY...some relief.  The man sitting directly in front of me suddenly JUMPED up and began frantically digging through the overhead compartment; he looked frustrated and pained.  I saw the relief flood across his face as he found what he was looking for...HIS EARPHONES!  He caught eye contact with me, pointed to the seat in front of him and mouthed, "I couldn't take it any more..."!  I settled in to the drumming of a rock-n-roll song that was much preferable to the chattering and cackling going on in front of me.  Who knew that with a pounding headache, "Cat Scratch Fever" blaring in my ears would be the lullaby that eventually put me to sleep.

I awoke several hours later free of my headache and feeling much better.  I looked around and noticed that "talking woman" had dozed off to sleep, herself.  I felt like we should all do what the people did at the end of that old "Airplane" movie...walk past her and shove her...wake her up...start talking in her ear.  But for now, I would just enjoy the peace and quite; we were about to land soon.  That's when she woke up.  It was merely like a tape had been paused, for she picked up right where she left off...same volume...same tone...same speed (ugh...).  Then I noticed that almost EVERYONE around her was also wearing their earplugs too.  Note to self:  NEVER travel without i-pod and earplugs. 

As we were preparing to leave the plane, the man in front of me said, "I have never heard anyone talk that fast before in my life."  Robby replied, "Perhaps an auctioneer."  The man quickly said, "Yea...and nobody was buying today!"  We made if off the plane in Houston and now had the last leg of our trip to complete before we were home; a 3 1/2 hour drive.  It had been a very long day; actually several days.  I hoped that we had done everything possible to get Caitlin settled in her new home.  I found it difficult knowing that I wouldn't see her for at least a month.  However, you will all be pleased to know that I did not make a fuss as we said our good-byes that morning...OK, maybe I just hung on to the end of Rapunzel's flowing locks a bit as she jumped out of that castle window!

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