Day 197: Back in Chicago

I finally made it back to Chicago and it was not all that easy. What was supposed to be a 9 hour flight ended up being a 16 hour flight. After leaving Frankfurt almost two hours late the flight proceeded to be rather uneventful (apart from the cranky-climby children problem, which I already wrote about after the flight to Germany five weeks ago) and when the plane began to descend I already thought we had managed to make up a little of the original delay. Yet, just as I thought this, the pilot informed us that we were in fact not starting our descent into Chicago but into TORONTO! Reason: Chicago O’Hare was closed due to severe Tornadoes and we had run out out fuel, hence were forced to refuel in Toronto and wait for O’Hare to open again. We then sat around in the plane for about three hours waiting for departure clearance. After that happened we headed for Chicago, which was another 1 1/1 hour flight and then circled the airport waiting for the storm to weaken. That did not really happen but we were eventually cleared for a rather interesting (to say the least) landing. After landing seven hours late, immigration, customs, baggage claim etc. took another two hours and since the El had a power outage I had to take a cab, which meant waiting in line another two hours and then standing in traffic on flooded highways for one more hour. Good stuff. When I got here I began to grasp the severity of the situation–it actually looked like a war zone (lots of beautiful old trees knocked over, lots of damage, flooding, destroyed roofs–one of the roofs apparently landed on lake Shore Drive!–and about 350.000 households without power). All in all a good start into the new semester. I am anticipating that all copiers, which we have to use to cope the syllabi for our students, will be broken tomorrow as well. That would just fit into this chaotic situation. We’ll see. At least I’m home now, have internet access again and can begin preparing for Tuesday, which is when I will begin teaching again. But first I need to get more sleep. I’m still pretty wiped and the Indian food from the flight (greasy leg of lamb) has taken a serious toll on my stomach. Hope everyone out there is well–I’ll hopefully get back to posting regularly again from now on. cheers

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3 Comments

  1. Hey, at least you didn’t crash on a strange island with 40-some other survivors and CG polar bears. 😉 Welcome back!

    School…yay…

  2. He, he..thanks!
    I was fantasizing about that kind of crash but had to come to the shocking conclusion that I might very well die in it, would quite likely be stranded on a island that is cold as fuck and that, should I survive the crash, I would be surrounded by a far smaller ratio of attractive people than the show suggests. Not sure what I did wrong–is there a specific airline you have to fly in order to achieve the desired outcome (I couldn’t find Oceanic on Expedia)?

  3. Pain in the butt – I hate it when these things happen, and eitther I am attracting them like hardly anyone else, or they happen much more often than airlines would admit – probably the latter.

    Wishing a happy teaching spree to you!


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