I sit perched in my corner at the airport as usual headphones on engrossed in my TV show. From time to time my eyes wander to those around me who are doing the same or talking on their phones.
Sitting here alone in an airport makes my mind wander, what if the plane goes down, what if I miss my connections, the endless what it’s. Considering I had been told I had a 2 hour flight delay, it seemed like a good time to call my family/friends and tell them I love them.
The 2 hour flight delay ended up being 6 hours or more, as we all sat, stood walked around the airport for hours and then sat on a tarmac for another few hours, making me question my sanity of taking vacation during winter. I was pulling my hair out, when a passenger struck up a conversation with me. We had a plenty of time to talk about our different destinations. He was going on his adventure, me to Spain for my adventure, but we both had a long layover in Turkey.
Just when we were about to board the plane, he suggests that we have dinner when we get to Turkey. What better way to kill hours than having dinner with a stranger in a strange country.
When we land in Istanbul hours later, I assume the stranger has forgotten the dinner invitation, however, I step outside the plane and there he is waiting for me. I help him navigate his way through visa, customs etc, since I understand chaos and broken English better than he did.
Considering our flight delay and how late we got into Turkey, our dinner eventually turns out to be Turkish chocolates and wine. We sit around for hours talking about our lives and how strange it is that an American and a Sri Lankan strike a friendship in Istanbul.
The next morning we head back to the airport, to catch our flights to our different destinations, promising to meet back in Turkey on our return. As easy as it was for me to get on my plane, he apparently had a bit more of an adventure getting to his destination.
Another flight delay and I finally land in Malaga, from where I am driving to Marbella. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marbella)
I feel like I lost 2 days between my travels, but I get the Marbella, where the Mediterranean greets me. The scent of the fresh air and food floats throughout, making me forget flight delays, bad weather and everything else I left behind.
I sit here on boardwalk in Marbella, sipping my coffee, watching people stroll around, I want to pinch myself, am I really in Spain ? I take in another breath of fresh air and realize, yes I am here and about to begin an adventure of a lifetime.
There is a carnival that I plan to see, a farmers market that I want to visit, the endless food I will eat and wine I will drink and of course there will be some running involved too. After all there is a boardwalk that runs along the Mediterranean sea, and I would be a fool to not take advantage of that.
I sit here typing watching the sun go down from my room, trying not to think of it all ending too soon. My thoughts are disturbed by the ringing phone and it is the stranger calling to let me know, he made it to his destination and the adventure he had once I left to catch my flight.
Despite flight delays and every other hiccup that I faced to get here, I will take the new friendships I made and will continue to make, the wonderful food and a road trip of a lifetime to Portugal and Gibraltar.
The last few months have had its ups and downs, but if this is the reward I give myself, it has been well worth it.