Serendipity (continued)

I am writing this from the Admiral’s Club in Chicago, my second visit of the morning.  Here’s how my travel has gone so far:

My friend picked me up on time to drive me to the airport, with ease and grace.  As I waited to go through the security checkpoint for my flight to Chicago, I ran into a local friend whom I hadn’t connected with in a month;  she changed seats to sit next to me and we had a good chance to catch up.  I knew I had a two-hour layover before my connection to Phoenix for a Geotran class this weekend, so I looked for the nearest Admiral’s Club, only two gates away from the Phoenix flight.   After hot chocolate and porridge for breakfast, with a chance to catch up on my email, and to reserve a shuttle to my hotel in the Phoenix, I wandered back to the gate in time for boarding.

Behold!  They were overbooked, and offering $600 for volunteers to take a later flight.  Usually I don’t have the flexibility but this time my gut whispered, “You could do that!”  So I stepped up, the first in line … so long as they could get me on a flight today, so that I could be in class at 9am tomorrow.  (I take the notes, so I need to be there, and on time.)

By the time the flight took off, they were offering $800, plus hotel and meal vouchers, to the volunteers who were able to fly out tomorrow — with the exception of moi. The efficient flight attendants had noted that I needed to arrive in Phoenix today without fail, and as I was at the top of the list, they assigned me the ONE available seat on the 1.50 flight, arriving at 4.40pm.  Within an hour of volunteering, I had a new flight that was actually better for me, plus a voucher for $800, plus a fascinating conversation with a fellow travel volunteer, all before retiring back to the conveniently located Admiral’s Club for a second round of breakfast, mocha, and high-speed internet.

The moral of this story is to always listen to your intuition.  I didn’t have to think it out;  my gut said “This means YOU!”  I stepped up promptly, and received the perfect solution to the airline, for my own travel needs, and for the fellow with whom I exchanged a friendly connection and contact information.  Curiously enough, normally he also had tight travel arrangements, but this time had left a day on each end of his trip to Phoenix — and as he’d already been bumped off his earlier flight, his net gain was $1,500 in vouchers, with a room and meals in Chicago overnight, and an early flight that would still let him fulfill his schedule in Phoenix.  Plus, of course, we each got to make a new friend as we waited happily together!

As Dame Julian of Norwich wrote:  All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.”  Follow your intuition;  it will never lead you astray.  More to the point, it will guide you into serendipity, that journey of ease and grace, with unexpected delights along the way!

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