After a wonderful week of our honeymoon, we were ready to return back home. Checking out of the hotel was simple, and so was checking into our flight. It was suggested we arrive 3 hours early. We were scheduled to leave Punta Cana at 4:45pm. Well 4:25pm arrives and we hadn’t started boarding. Nobody gave us any updates. Five minutes later we see our plane pull up and after deboarding, cleaning it out and loading us up we finally left. We only had a two hour layover in Charlotte so we (and many other people) were nervous about making our connection.
As we back up from the gate, the pilot comes over the intercom and says that there is something on the runway (maybe birds) so they must come out and look into it. Uggggh!
We finally land in Charlotte at 9:00pm (for a 10:20 flight). This seems like plenty of time to catch a flight – however we have to go through customs. But wait! Right when we land, everyone stands up to start getting their things. The pilot now tells us that due to international rules, when another plane is boarding we must be on lockdown on our plane so we must sit back down until that plane finishes boarding. Are you serious?!!
Once we leave the plane we walk into the customs line which has seven rows of people waiting! By now, I’m assuming we will be spending the night in NC. After an HOUR, we get to the front of the line. The guy checking our passport asks us all type of random questions and we became more frustrated. Then we had to get all of our checked in luggage and check it back in. The lady asked which flight we were on and said that we probably wouldn’t make it but could try. And here’s where the challenge begins –
As we went through security, Milton took all of our carryon luggage. I took off my shoes and let them go through. As soon as they came out (without taking time to put them back on) I started sprinting through the airport. And I mean sprinting full speed. We had to go all the way to E11, which wasn’t close. I ran the wrong way on the moving sideway and people at every gate watched me pass by. I soon realized I wasn’t in high school anymore and I became out of breath. I would walk and breathe for one gate and then sprint again.
As I arrived at our gate, the door had already been closed. I ran up to the flight attendant and asked if my fiance (yes I told her fiance) and I could still get on the plane. She looked at me and all that I went through to get there and said that we could get on board if Milton came quick. I get nervous as I wondered if he went the wrong direction but finally see him with all of our things. He said other people pointed him the direction I was running.
We walked on the plane looking like two sweaty people that just finished a marathon – but we made it. As we pulled off, the pilot told us that a panel is lose and someone must come out and look at it. Not again! We finally landed after midnight. Unfortunately, our luggage didn’t make it until the next morning so our dirty undies stayed the night in NC. AND, I learned a very valuable lesson – don’t run without shoes on the moving sidewalk. I could not walk on my feet for a couple of hours because I had red marks looking just like the metal. But all is now good and we are safely home!