Snowbird Migration Time Again (Or “Adventures in Flying”)

As regular readers know, we’re snowbirds. Birdwatchers know snowbirds, right?

Is this a snowbird? Photo (c) Laura Lavrack

Now’s the time when all of this stuff should be gone from our neighborhood, with luck.

Time when a Florida snowbird’s thoughts turn to Michigan’s lilacs and strawberries and Cherry Festival.

We’re hoping this year’s flight north is much, much better than last year’s. In case you missed it, here’s what happened on the northward return last June:

  • Our plane landed in the middle of a cornfield in the middle of the dark and stormy night instead of at the expected airport where loved ones waited three hours before.
  • We were grateful to be on the ground safely, but we were two hundred miles from our destination and the entire cornfield airport was closed!
  • We couldn’t get so much as a can of soda. Of course, we’d had no dinner because what airline serves food on a 45 minute flight?
  • We rented a car and drove three hours in the pitch-black without a seeing-eye dog to navigate.
  • A local cop pulled us over at 2:00 a.m. only ten miles from our coveted warm bed! (Are you kidding me??!!)
  • He said, very politely, that he’d stopped us for failing to dim our headlights within 500 feet of oncoming traffic! (Traffic? What traffic?)
  • We were so bleary-eyed we had no strength to argue that our rental’s bright lights weren’t turned on and we’d encountered nothing but a possum parade for more than 50 miles!

Maybe, instead of worrying about the trip, the mystery/suspense/thriller writer half of this snowbird team turns her thoughts to Revenge the Sue Grafton Way. What do you think? Have you had any not-so-fab “adventures in flying” lately?

, , , , , , , , , , ,

18 Responses to Snowbird Migration Time Again (Or “Adventures in Flying”)

  1. Louise Behiel May 8, 2012 at 8:45 am #

    you landed in a corn field? good heavens…enough adrenaline in that experience to keep me going for the rest of my natural life – which would have been shortened by the landing. everyone okay?

    yeah, definitely this trip has to be better. my goodness.

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      Well, it wasn’t still a cornfield, exactly. There’s an airport there now. But they put the airport in some guy’s cornfield, so there was cornfield all around for miles!! And pitch dark, due to the low clouds from the storm. And NO signage. Not even a McDonald’s still open at that time of night. Thank heavens for my iPad or I wouldn’t have had a map, even!! yiyiyiyiyiyiyi

  2. Melinda VanLone May 8, 2012 at 9:16 am #

    Yikes! A corn field. That sounds very bumpy and not pleasant for either you or the corn. Wow. I sincerely hope your flight north this year is uneventful and boring. And wow that cop must have been very bored to stop you for something so stupid.

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 9:23 am #

      No kidding! I think he must have been bored because really, he couldn’t have had anything to do for hours along that road. But maybe he thought anyone driving along there at that hour had to be up to mischief of some sort? He didn’t give us a ticket, so I guess that’s a good thing….

  3. Marcy Kennedy May 8, 2012 at 9:23 am #

    I hope your flight home this year is much better, but it sounds to me like there’s a story kernel somewhere in landing in a corn field. I haven’t had flight experiences that bad. I was trapped on a plane on the runway for a three hour delay once. That wasn’t fun since I rarely sit anywhere completely still for three hours. I was so stiff when the flight finally landed.

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 9:24 am #

      Oh, yeah. Those “tarmac delays” can be awful! We should share “adventures in flying” stories sometime. Could be fun!! (Like the time I slept three hours on a Burger King Bench because I missed my connection….)

  4. L.Leander May 8, 2012 at 9:55 am #

    Love the post! Didn’t realize you are from MI. Me too! It’s a wonderful place to call home, but we winter in Mexico near the beautiful Sea of Cortez. We leave for the states next week and have been following weather reports closely – we hope the snow is over!

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

      Glad you enjoyed the post. Wintering in Mexico has been something we’ve considered because prior to 2012 (and Global Warming fears notwithstanding – LOL!) it hasn’t been all that warm here in Florida. Glad to hear you love it. Weather in Michigan is improving every day. Good to know, right? I’m really hoping we don’t miss the lilacs and the strawberries. Nothing like a Michigan strawberry….

  5. Pat O'Dea Rosen May 8, 2012 at 11:44 am #

    Diane! I’m with Marcy; there’s a plot twist in this story. I’m pretty sure the twist involves Jack Reacher. As we know, he would have elected to WALK home, and a certain FBI duo would have spotted him just before they dimmed their rental car’s high beams.

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 11:58 am #

      LOL! Of course he would! And of course, they would! Nice plan. Hmmmmmmmm….

  6. shannon esposito May 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

    Diane, that’s a terrible flying experience! Sounds like you handled it well, though. I probably shouldn’t have read this post as I’m trying to conquer my flying phobia this year and have two flights scheduled for this summer. 🙂 When you come back to Florida, bring some of those yummy cherries with you!

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 7:37 pm #

      Yikes! Afraid of flying? My character Kim Otto is afraid of flying and insists it’s because she’s well informed! The cherries are terrific; wish I could bring them back. Alas, the season for them only lasts about 3 weeks, and when they’re picked, only a few days. Thanks for reading!

  7. Sheila Seabrook May 8, 2012 at 3:33 pm #

    Oh my goodness, Diane, a cornfield? How scary that must have been … but what great fodder for an upcoming book.

    Enjoy your summer back at home!

    • Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 7:38 pm #

      Thanks, Shiela. It’ll be a lovely summer, I hope!

  8. Lynette M Burrows May 8, 2012 at 11:15 pm #

    Oh. my. goodness. That landing must have gotten the adrenaline going!

    We had a scary one once. We took a plane to Austin, Texas. As we boarded the plane my husband said he could smell hydraulic fluid. I couldn’t smell it so I thought nothing of it. People spill stuff all the time.

    We had a smooth take off but weren’t in the air long before my husband whispered to me that one of the engines had shut down. I started getting nervous. Fortunately it was a short flight.

    It was after dark, but still early, and the flight was on time. The pilot announced the weather in Austin and that we’d be landing in about ten minutes. Then he said, by the way folks, I don’t want to alarm you, but we’ll be landing a little ways away from the airport and you’ll probably see some emergency equipment nearby. We’re having a little trouble with some hydraulics, but don’t worry, this is purely precautionary.

    As we approached we could see we were landing at the very end of the runway as far from the terminal as possible and the runway was literally lined with firetrucks and ambulances. Red flashed on every vehicle. The landing was rough, the brakes squealed and we slid sideways a bit, but the pilot did a great job. The plane stopped upright. No injuries, thank goodness. But lots of adrenaline that night, too.

    At least we weren’t in a cornfield, in the middle of the night, miles from where we wanted to be!

    Diane, here’s hoping you have a smooth, safe flight back to Michigan!

  9. Diane Capri May 8, 2012 at 11:28 pm #

    WOW, Lynette, that sounds downright scary. Glad it worked out okay. Pilots are amazing, you know? So many times they bring the planes down safely and we never hear about it. Glad yours was a great one. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Karen McFarland May 10, 2012 at 4:53 pm #

    OMG Diane! What a night! What an experience! And all you wanted to do was go home and climb into bed for cryin’ out loud! This does sound like a Reacher novel. But I don’t know if he would have walked. And he wouldn’t have rented a car he would’ve stole the car! 🙂

    • Diane Capri May 10, 2012 at 5:14 pm #

      Seriously true, Karen! Stolen the car! Absolutely! And punched out the cop, too!

Get Jack in the Green—Free!

Sign up FREE to my email list & start reading Jack in the Green in minutes...