I had a great time in Hawaii recently, but my trip was marred by a series of unfortunate events. On my last day there I met my friend Josh in Maui, and he kindly offered me a ride to Honolulu international airport. This was extremely nice as often the bus drivers won’t let you on the bus with a big backpack. They claim it’s for space and safety reasons, I claim they’re putting money in the pockets of the cab and shuttle bus companies. After saying goodbye to Josh I walked in to the airport and up to the departures board and started looking for my flight to Sydney. The plane was supposed to leave at one in the morning. I looked at the board but couldn’t see it. I walked up closer and looked again. The flight wasn’t there. Los Angeles, San Francisco, Vermont, Nadi… but no Sydney. I turned around and looked at the arrival board, no incoming flights from Sydney either. I could feel the panic starting to rise.
My airline didn’t have any representatives there either, so I walked up to a man working at the airport and he took a look at my ticket and said, “Girl, your flight took off last night. Trust me, it’s not the first time that’s happened.” I couldn’t believe I had been so stupid – I hadn’t looked at the ticket properly and had mixed the dates up back home when I wrote them into my travel plan. I cursed and walked out of the airport to find a shuttle bus to take me back to the hostel I’d stayed at in Waikiki. It was late and I thought I’d deal with all of this the next day when I could get hold of someone from the airline company and my travel agent at home. As I waited for a shuttle, I reached down to see how much money I had left and I made the second devastating discovery of the night. I had lost my little bag, along with all my money, my mobile and my Visa card. I could feel a wave of panic going through my mind, this was it, I was lost. How do I get back from this point? Do I become a bag lady in Hawaii now? An almost deserted airport on the other side of the world, no money, no travel companion and no flight. I walked back in to the airport and found a security guard working the nightshift. I explained my situation and asked if I could borrow his mobile phone. I realised that the only way to get out of this mess was to get hold of Josh again and get him to come back and pick me up.
Desperately seeking Josh
The security guard said he felt very sorry for me, but that it was a company phone and he wasn’t allowed to use it for anything that didn’t concern airport security. I was so desperate I was going to tell him I needed the phone to ring my fellow ‘terrorists’ to cancel the attack, as I had missed the plane. But then I might be arrested…and luckily, the security guard gave me four quarters and asked me to use the public phone. I had tried to reach Josh on public phones before – and once again, I couldn’t get through. Then I found three old ladies in a far corner of the airport and asked if they had a mobile phone I could borrow. They looked suspiciously at me. I explained the situation and one of the women said, “Wow I thought I had shitty day but you really messed up your day.” She lent me her phone and I got hold of Josh. Fortunately, he was able to pick me up. I smiled and thanked the ladies. They even gave me a lei (flower wreath). So I didn’t end up becoming a homeless person shuffling through the streets of Honolulu after all, and I made it to Sydney.