Standing in Line

You can’t get away from them. Standing in lines is a standard part of travel. Notice I did not write enjoyable, laughable, fun or enlightening part of travel. It is what it is. Actually, refusing to stand in a line while traveling is the biggest reason that led to my marriage, but that is fuel for a future blog.


It started this morning. With a wife and two kids on summer vacation, mornings are busy times in my household. I had to stand in line for the bathroom. No sooner do I wake up on my departure day, than I have to stand in a line. It was the first thing I did this morning. Left the house on my long commute to the airport. With all the stimulus money being injected into the economy these days, there is a lot of road construction going on and the inevitable lines that come with it. No, I wasn’t actually standing in a line; I was sitting in one while the traffic crawled at a snail’s pace nearly as soon as I left my house. No feeling quite as helpless as sitting in a vehicle that can transport you at nearly 100 mph if you dare, yet unable to move faster than 5 mph due to those darn traffic lines. Lots of time to people-watch though. I know it’s a cliché, but I actually did see a woman putting make-up on in her rear view mirror while we slowly plodded down the road. No problem, after all, who hasn’t? Am I right?


Now I’m at the airport and guess what? I’m standing in line again. Go figure. The line for checking in is short. Bag checked, boarding pass in hand and on to the line for security. This shouldn’t be too awful bad because being a member of the elite Triple Titanium Gold Clusters Snob level I get to pass through security while waiting in the “Priority Line”. The only priority however is that while we get our very own security checkpoint and carry-on x-ray screening belt, the rest of the airport herd is using the other seven that are available to them. Where is the priority in that? I notice that standing in line in your stocking feet or barefoot is different than standing in line when you have footwear on. I don’t know why.


Now in line for hot tea and something to nosh. At this point in your day you really feel like making cattle sounds, but you suppress the urge only to keep yourself from being taken away by uniformed officers.

Time to board. This is when it really gets silly. They actually have two lines. One has a red carpet for the Snob level I mentioned earlier. The other, right next to the red carpet, is just plain old grey carpet. My goodness, how do people stand it? Standing on regular old grey carpeting must be so humiliating.


On the plane and halfway to San Francisco. Midway through the flight, I take a walk towards the back. I don’t believe it! I am standing in line for the bathroom again. I’m looking around half expecting to see my wife and kids. Technically speaking, this is less of a line and more of a small crowd in a semi-circle nervously eyeing the lavatory door waiting for that red “occupied” sign to switch to the green “vacant” one. Click. Bingo!


I could go on all day writing about standing in lines while traveling. There was the line to get off the plane, the line to board the shuttle, the line to check into the hotel, etc. etc. But what’s the point? You learn to live with it. Better I take a walk to the coffee shop and get some caffeine. While I’m there I can think about my training week ahead as I……wait in line.

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