Saturday, July 31, 2004

Hectic flight home

Thanks to Dubya, I didn't get home until after 9 tonight. Well, maybe it wasn't only because of him. There was a little problem in that we were missing a flight attendant for our trip from Pittsburgh to Akron. That was after we were rerouted nearly to Albany because of bad weather in Philadelphia. I had to make my connection in five minutes. Should have known it wouldn't be as simple as walking from one plane to another. As luck would have it, just as we finally managed the necessary crew (about 7:15), we were told to wait because Air Force One was waiting for Bush and would take off immediately. I should have been home by 7. Such is the traveling life.

Got a chuckle out of the guy in front of me who was jones-ing huge for a cigarette. He wouldn't shut up. The good news is that I managed to read most of my latest book to review: "The Wisdom of Forgiveness" with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

I'm still revved from my amazing experience. New York is in my blood and I can't wait to return. Decided to pop back into St. Patrick's Cathedral today to pick up religious medals for the boys (St. Patrick for Ryan and Patrick and St. Michael for Mikey) and say a quick prayer. Imagine my delight when I saw a bagpiper standing on the front steps on Fifth Avenue. I walked inside just in time for a wedding to begin. It's odd to imagine being married in such a public place. Wonder how early they had to book the church?

Tourists were crowding against the velvet ropes hoping for a glimpse of the bride. And then the organ began playing and I could feel the bass in my belly. Emotions swept over me and I couldn't help the tears streaming down my face. I decided to sit in a side pew to watch for a few moments and regain my composure. A security guard knelt down and gestured with his hands and face, telling the young flower girl to smile big. The amber flicker and glow of the novena candles at the side altars was a soothing site that adds to the sacredness of the place.

I head across the street afterward to The NBA Store to buy gifts for the boys. Jeez, they would have a field day in that store. I think I'll get some birthday and Christmas gifts when I return in September. And then I make a stop at the drugstore for BandAids because my feet are a mess from walking. I have blisters everywhere but managed to push through the pain until my trip was nearing an end.

Can't believe I had to leave. While waiting in LaGuardia I made a mental list of all the things I didn't see. September's trip will definitely involve a visit to the East Village and the Brooklyn Bridge and who knows what else.

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