I woke up at 8am this morning and ran down to Le Pain, my favorite coffee shop in Buenos Aires, for one more cappuccino and Eggs Benedict before my 12:45 flight to the beautiful San Carlos de Bariloche. All day yesterday I was really stressing out about traveling within South America because of the language barrier and the difficulty that might cause in getting to my flight on time, and I get really nervous on airplanes, even more nervous when I’m flying in unfamiliar territory, and even more so when I’m flying into mountain, oh boy. Nonetheless, worrying time was over, as check-out time at my Airbnb was upon me, and the time to avoid uncomfortable situations was over. I called an Uber (what a lifesaver that company is) and took a ride down the Avenida to BUE domestic airport. I hopped out, grabbed my bags and headed to the ticket counter. Checking my bags was easy money, it cost me 180 pesos (roughly 11 bucks, wayyyy cheaper than in the US) and I was off to my gate. At this point I’m thinking “wow this is going way more smooth than I thought it would.” I spoke to soon. I arrive at my gate with news that my flight is delayed and they had no information on why, only that they would let us know in 30 minutes what the update was. That 30 minutes turned into 50 minutes and then we were boarding. At this point I’m already thinking the delay was a sign from the powers above not to risk my life on this plane, but something keeps me walking to the gate. I go through the gate and down some steps onto the actual runway, where we get on a shuttle that takes us to our plane, a bit unorthodox and more signs to stop fucking walking to this plane, but I keep moving. I purchased a window seat, but as I come up to row 15, my row, I see toddler jumping around in my window seat. I didn’t even want to attempt the Spanish it was going to take to tell the lady to move her child so I bit the bullet and sat in the available seat. No biggie.
It’s minutes before take off and I’m really freaking out now because I’m only really nervous during two parts of a flight, the take off, and the landing, in between I usually sleep like a baby. Anyway, my unreasonable fear subsides and we take off for Bariloche. A couple hours later, the pilot comes on over the loud speaker and lets us know that we are making our descent into Bariloche and that we would be landing in 20 minutes. I am so relieved at this point. The flight was smooth for the most part and I’m starting to believe my unreasonable worries are going to be proven false once again. That is, until the plane almost falls out of the sky. Now, I realize my sensitivity to flights could make my description of what one would call just a bumpy landing seem exaggerated, but I promise you, who ever is reading this, that I really thought it was over. The pilot took a nose dive for the runway, and the different air pressures we were traveling through made the plane jump so dramatically that the lights flickered. My heart was beating so fast and I was about to lose it. My biggest problem was that the little kid who stole my seat and his mommy are laughing like everything’s ok. Clearly I’m alone. Thats fine. Thankfully, we landed safely and I grabbed a taxi and was off to my Airbnb.
Besides the taxi driver driving like it was just him and nobody else on the road, the process was smooth. I was at my new home, and I was surrounded by beauty. I felt great. I walked in the door, went grab my phone to let my people know I arrived safe, and you guessed it, I left my phone in the taxi. What a day. I had hope he would notice it and bring it back, but I’m sure its in the hands of some lucky local searching for customers to pawn off his new find. Oh well.
With today’s travel, I learned a few lessons. One is that fear isn’t real. Most of the time its an unreasonable outcome that you have formulated based off of no supporting evidence, that only seems important because you think about it so much. The quote by Mark Twain never seemed so appropriate than on this day, “I am an old man and I have known a great many of troubles, but most of them never happened.” The other lesson is that you can always fall victim of short-comings or turn it into an advantage. I lost my phone, but now I get to spend more time focusing on this beautiful nature surrounding me, and blogging, instead of scrolling down timelines.