After the 3 services this morning, Josh was kind enough to drive me to St. Louis through torrential rain. He also got to see me get stressed about not getting to the airport on time (I'm a bit high-strung when it comes to traveling by air). Good times so far...
I was scheduled to fly out of St. Louis to Chicago O'Hare leaving St. Louis at 3:51pm (Central) - connecting to Toronto by about 9pm (Eastern). I got to my gate in plenty of time - just to see that they'd changed my gate number. At my original gate number, I noticed a flight departing at a nearby gate that was going directly to Toronto. I chuckled about how much faster that flight would make it to Canada. Not too much later, the airline attendant paged a passenger with my last name for that flight. While my last name is pretty common, I thought - I'm a high-strung traveler - maybe I should just make sure I'm not doing the wrong thing. I went up to the counter and told the lady why I was confused. She somewhat listened, but quickly said, "Well, do you want to go straight to Toronto?" I was a bit surprised - but after a few questions, a lot of fast work by her (including getting my bag switched), and a text message to my family that I'd be coming sooner than planned - I was on a direct flight to Toronto! How cool is that?!?
(I landed in Toronto at 6pm Eastern. Turns out my flight out of Chicago was delayed and didn't arrive here until 10:35pm Eastern.)
So I got to walk around downtown Toronto and eat dinner with my family tonight - and already, I'm VERY impressed with this city. It's really clean, very pretty (right on the lake), and we've already seen some serious shopping potential. Yay vacation!
Other quick notes from the day:
- Mary: "I left my pillow and blanket in the car because Dad didn't want me to carry it through the hotel lobby looking like the Clamptons."
Bethany: "The who?"
Mary: "The Clamptons!"
Bethany: "You mean...the Clampetts?"
- Note to self: wearing Illinois apparel will make you friends in large cities - even internationally (though the thousands of engineers in town doesn't hurt the odds). I made a friend on the airport shuttle who went to the U of I - and met another random Illinoisian in the restaurant. I was not surprised by this in Chicago (with my awesome orange and blue scarf) - but I didn't expect it in Canada