The First Leg

When Sister and I took off from the Dallas Love Field airport (a minute early), the flight attendant warned us that we would probably be experiencing a bumpy flight due to the wind. She was right! The seat belt light stayed on for most of the flight, but it smoothed out in the middle.
We landed early in Baltimore at noon, which gave us plenty of time to get our checked luggage and switch gates. We’re flying WOW air: a relatively new Icelandic airline that promises cheap (and purple) flights to select locations in the world (review coming soon). Sister and I had to wait outside security until the gate workers got to the international terminal for the day—we were on the earliest international flight, leaving at 19:00. Upon easily checking in and checking our bags, we found out our flight was delayed two and a half hours, but that was no problem for our plans. Our connection was through Iceland, but our flight there would wait for us. The problem was that we had already been waiting in the airport for four hours, and now we were looking at five more. 

To fill our time, we did lots of Internet browsing on the free airport wifi. The wifi was quick, but you had to re-login every forty-five minutes to avoid paying a fee. Sister and I took turns staying with the bags and walking around, looking for snacks, toys, and oddities. Our flight was delayed another half hour. We had dinner from the one restaurant in the terminal. When we finally boarded, everyone was exhausted. Of course, I couldn’t sleep on the flight. Sister and I were next to each other, conveniently in front of the exit row, and couldn’t recline. It was amazing to see the ocean pass below us while it was still light outside. Once it got dark, I listened to Hamilton the musical while trying to find a comfortable position to sleep, to no avail. It was breathtaking to watch the sun rise from my window. The land below was mountainous and covered in ice and snow, so I guessed it was Greenland.

When we finally landed after what felt like an eternity, we learned that nearly everyone on the plane had been lied to—the connecting flights hadn’t waited for us, and there were no other flights that day. Instead of giving anyone any information, they kept pushing us ahead to the next service desk, until someone finally said we had to go get our bags and go through customs. Then, we’d get information at the meeting point. We did as we were told. Silly Sister and I waited and waited and waited for eternity while bags circled the carousel. There were five flights on one carousel, and everyone crowded around. After waiting for an hour and a half, I got angsty and took a short walk; that’s when I discovered the “oversized baggage” area. Our bags were under weight and normal backpacks, but clearly that made them oversized (even though when we asked at the baggage counter, the employee wouldn’t give us the time of day, insisting we had to look for our flight and wait for the carousel).

With bags in tow, we headed out and stumbled upon the elusive “meeting point.” It seemed like our whole flight from Baltimore was in line, but it was moving fairly quickly. We chit-chatted around, and found out everyone’s situation was nearly the exact same. The lack of information we received was unsettling to everyone. At the front of the line, a hotel representative was checking off names and handing out cards. That was it. He had no information. Take this paper card, get on the bus. So we did. The bus driver promised a short drive, yet we pulled up to the hotel an hour and a half later. One couple was horrified and asked to go back on the bus—they were told the hotel was five minutes away, and they had rebooked a flight on a different airline for that afternoon. Everyone checked in and was handed a room key (we later found out one man from our group was given a key to a room someone was in and walked in on him sleeping). We had yet to receive any information or speak to anyone from the airline, but we were served a free lunch. Sister went to walk outside at the beautiful river, and I retreated to shower and nap, since I wasn’t sure I could function without any sleep.

When I woke up, Sister had heard from Mama about our flight. According to our booking number, we’re booked for a 6:20 flight to London. Easy! At the desk, the lady told us the bus was leaving at 2:30. We finally had some answers. With our bellies full of lasagna and bread, we retreated to our room, eager to sleep and awake before the sun the next day.