On January 10 it was time once again to make my way to Jamaica for Hanson’s “Back to the Island” event. My flight was set to take off at 6am, so I had to get up and be out of the house by 3am to make sure I got there in time. I arrived in plenty of time – as the security check point wasn’t even open yet. But while I was sitting there waiting for the plane – it started to snow. This wasn’t supposed to start until 6am, but here it was just after 5 and it had already begun! I was on a mission to attempt to get an earlier flight – one that I was supposed to be on but then they swapped around flight times so I had less than half an hour to get it and American Airlines doesn’t allow layovers that short. But when we got on the plane it was covered in snow and we were delayed an hour taking off due to waiting to be de iced. I had paid to upgrade my seat so I could be off the plane earlier – but all that got me was yelled at by 2 flight attendants. Typically I preboard as I am a bit slow to walk and get my stuff stowed, but they never called for pre-boarding so I went on with everyone else. I needed some help getting my bag up and the flight attendant had a shoulder injury and couldn’t help. Fortunately I found a guy who helped me stow the bag and pulled it down for me at the end of the flight.
We weren’t able to make up any time so we got in to Miami an hour later as well and the plane had already taken off and was in the air for 20 minutes when I got there. My friend Kim was in the same boat and actually would have been able to get on the earlier flight because she had no delays in New Jersey but waited for me. This time we were able to preboard and she got my bag stowed for me and then I would wait for her to get to my row to pull it down again. My whole row was so empty for the longest time. Until they had someone in a wheelchair and her daughter come in and sit next to me. Of course, this meant that we had to wait for everyone to get off the flight before they could get her out in the wheelchair. One of the flight attendants suggested I jump over the woman to get out of the row. Yeah, that wasn’t going to be happening. So Kim and I ended up being the last ones off the flight – but still had to wait in the customs line and all that anyway so it wasn’t too big of a deal.
Matt Wertz was on our flight and we chatted with him a bit while waiting for our shuttle. They took me, Kim and 1 other girl and Matt asked about him going too – but by this time he was with Paul McDonald as well and there were 5 of them. The shuttle guy asked how many they had and he said 5 and he said no, there wasn’t enough room. So I was thisclose to riding to the resort with Matt and Paul but they ended up on a later shuttle. Looking back – I should have stayed with them and got on a new shuttle because Kim ended up in the front of the bus and I ended up sitting on a jump seat which didn’t do my back any favors.
We got to the resort at about 7pm and then had to fill out our form… which was a different area if your roommate had already checked in. Our form said the reservation was under “Hanson, Hanson” which I thought was kind of funny. Then I got my room key and I was in the same room as last year so I took off… to find a way to get to the room without too many stairs. As I was using my makeshift pool area railing one of the resort workers came and helped me get the bag to my room. When I opened the door I heard Maribeth yell “YOURE HERE!” and then she told me she had the worst travel day ever. I told her that I did too!
Turns out, her shuttle had a flat tire on the way there and the bus driver first kept going, then finally decided to stop, turned away a different bus that came to pick them up… and it took her FOREVER to get there and she had only been there about an hour when we thought she’d be there much, much earlier than that. To top it off, they couldn’t find our reservation (AGAIN!) which is why our sheet said Hanson, Hanson on it. AND when she went to check in for merch the 2nd year pins were already gone – not sure how that happens if you have a record of who was there last year and who wasn’t.
At that point we considered taking a nap before heading out to the show at 10pm but decided against it.