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  • Writer's pictureSarah Sturm


Going postal shouldn't just be a phrase about post service workers. It should be synonymous with "going airline".

Every single time I travel I can count on one thing, some crazy lady in heels having an absolute melt down because she is now going to miss her connecting flight to wherever-ville.

Lesson 1: Unless you're flying for the purpose of transporting a beating heart into another human, your missed connection, cancelation or delayed flight does NOT (ever) warrant verbally abusing an innocent person just trying to do their job. When I see this type of behavior, I always feel the need to overly compensate for them with kindness and a creepy amount of smiles and pleasantries. It especially makes me laugh when people absolutely lose their shit about such trivial things, like not getting back to college a day early. Bump that. Enjoy your extra day of vacation. Nothing, absolutely NOTHING you can do about things like weather or the crazy airline algorithms which allow us to book tickets from the comfort of your fat ass on your sofa to absolutely ANYwhere in the entire, wide world. So let's all take a step back, put your sparkly designer bag back on your skinny little shoulders, loosen those high heel straps and ask yourself, "What am I actually upset about? Is it truly this poor little asian girls fault or is it my inability to accept that I, in fact, cannot and do not have control over everything in life." I'm no expert, but I'd bet on the latter.

Seeing this type of behavior right in your face at the start of your adventure will be a good reminder later on in your travels that day to not have a freak out. Because you will be tested. That is something you can be sure of.

I thought my test was over after the first delay in Albuquerque, waiting for my flight to San Francisco. Hah. Childs play. That was just prep for the absolute scariest flight of my existence. It’s funny how quickly you bond with someone you once thought you had nothing in common with after a flight so shaky and bumpy that people were doing their hail marries and kissing their babies. Yeah, Inferno-reading-lady and I really bonded after grasping each others hands for a good 15 minutes. When we landed and I was certain I wasn’t actually going to throw up on the baby in front of me, all I could think was, “and people think adventure is glamorous…pshhhh”.

That was merely round II in this flexibility contest. I still had two more to get through before I set foot on Wellington soil.

Round III you ask? Well, that one came in the form of running for 20 minutes with a 42 lb bag on my back, a 10 lb bag (with full face helmet) on my front and a woogidy 64 lb bike bag on wheels. I had to make a connection within 60 minutes. No problem you think. Oh but New Zealand checks for any and every spec of dirt or the interpretation of dirt that might have one day thought about being in the grooves of your running shoes or bike tires. So just go ahead and take 40 minutes out of that nice 60 minute chunk of time. Now add in a 20 minute run with 116 pounds of American mountain bike girl shit and you have yourself a missed connection to Wellington! Yippy!

What I learned:

  • KIWI’S ARE NOT JUST A NICE FRUIT, THEY’RE A NICE PEOPLE. If the ladies in the airport are a reflection of the overall population here, they really are the nicest group of humans in all of the foreign lands I’ve been to.

  • SPONGEBOB RUNS SLOWLY. You have to be able to laugh at what everyone else is seeing. For me this was the image of a short little girl, running at about a 15 min mile pace with so much luggage strapped to her body that you can’t even tell if she’s wearing clothing. Then comes the scene of one of the straps coming undone, dropping all of her baggage and in an attempt to gather it all up her bike box decides it’s going to take on an adventure of its own and roll straight on down the road, solo. Had I not laughed out loud at myself, my mother would have been pissed at me. Because when shit is funny, shit is funny regardless of your flight leaving you behind. Because that happened too.

  • NALGENE BOTTLES MIGHT NOT JUST BE FOR CONSUMING LIQUIDS. Last thing I learned was just how much sweat my jeans and shirt can absorb. It had to have been enough to ring out an fill a Nalgene bottle. I didn’t test my theory but if I had 10 more minutes of running I might have had to try it.

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