FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Letter From The Editor: Eye On Travel

Sep 1, 2014
2014 / August 2014

Like our cover? We decided to switch things up a bit to showcase this magnificent beach scene and dramatic sky. The image of Cannon Beach in Oregon earned photographer Jeffrey Dowell a Tamron lens. Global Traveler and Tamron partnered in a Facebook contest, inviting travelers to submit their best images from around the world. Turn to page 82 to view the other 19 finalists.

While I didn’t capture any award-worthy images this month, I did successfully navigate a new (to me) situation. Thanks to an extended pattern of thunderstorms in the Chicago area during a recent layover, I spent my first-ever full night at an airport.

Over the course of two days, storms caused a domino effect of delays and cancellations, leaving thousands of passengers scrambling for seats on an ever-diminishing roster of outgoing flights. I entered the fray late in the game, on the evening of the second day of tumult, when it was clear I was not leaving the airport that night or, perhaps, even the following day.

With hotels within a 15-mile radius of the airport sold out, I holed up in the Admirals Club lounge, where at least a hundred people were already waiting in line for assistance. I opted to call American Airlines for help. By midnight I had Plan B on the books, so I called on childhood skills (remember building blanket-and-couch-cushion forts?) and created a makeshift bed, unaware the lounge would close for cleaning at 1:30 a.m. (Note to Admirals Club: During unusual circumstances like this, maybe you could close half of the lounge at a time rather than kick all stranded passengers to the curb.)

Wandering the halls — and feeling a bit like a refugee — I discovered a dorm-like community of cots and blankets, hundreds of them lined up row upon row just inside the security checkpoint. I scored an empty space and nodded off until 4 a.m., when the cots were cleared so security could begin processing incoming passengers. As I wandered away, an airport staffer handed me a zip-lock bag stocked with toiletries.

Suffice it to say, I made it home, albeit a day later than planned. I’m happy to check this particular travel milestone off my list — and I hope never to repeat it. But the one thing I keep mulling is the outlook of my fellow stranded passengers and the airport staff. Despite the chaos and fatigue, everyone remained pleasant, adopting a we’re-all-in-this-together attitude.

That’s a take-away I hope I’ll recall the next time I find myself getting cranky over a minor travel inconvenience.


FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.


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