A Step Back To Normal: Quick Weekend Trips

by joeheg

This year, we started to get back to our old, pre-Covid travel rhythm. We have a few longer trips here and there but in between those we fit in a few quick weekends out of town. While those consisted of driving to the beach in 2020 and 2021, previously we’d fly off on a Thursday or Friday and return on Sunday.

Our first try at a trip like this was back in April when we flew to New York City to see The Music Man on Broadway.

Our flight there was delayed several hours and we didn’t arrive at our hotel until 3 AM. We saw the show that evening, followed by Sleep No More the next day then we flew home, encountering another multi-hour delay. We had a good time but it was not a relaxing weekend because I was worried that I’d not be able to get home to go to work at my “real job” on Monday.

For our trips over the summer, we made sure to have backup plans to get home in case of flight delays or cancellations.

It wasn’t until our most recent trip to Texas when we commented that flying almost felt normal. The airport was crowded but everything seemed to be running better. Sure, there were some delays due to the weather, but that’s normal for flying to/from Orlando in the summer. Maybe it was time to give a quick weekend trip another try.

I had seen one of my favorite musicians was going back on tour for the first time since 2019, but the closest he’d be to us was Atlanta. Still, I wanted to go and decided to make the trip to see the show. Sharon stayed home, since she’s not a fan of this guy, but she and I agree with Dear Abby’s advice about married people traveling alone for pleasure.

So I booked a Basic Economy ticket on Delta to ATL on Friday, with a Sunday flight home on Southwest (which ended up being on a 737 MAX8.)

In between the flights, I went to see Matt Nathanson in Atlanta.

Who I went to see doesn’t matter. It’s the fact that I felt OK without having any secondary flights booked to get home. That’s somewhat because I was “only” in Atlanta, and, worst case scenario, I could have rented a car and driven home if I needed to. However, all of my flights operated on time (we even got earlier than scheduled).

It was like back when we’d fly to Chicago for the weekend to see Phil Collins or go to New York to see Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden [Note from Sharon: Best Billy Joel concert EVER!]. The rule was that if we could get tickets, I’d find a way to get there. I hadn’t done that in a while.

I’m not pretending that everything is back to normal. If something happens at any airline, things can fall apart in a moment. But for a single weekend in September 2022, it felt like I was back in 2019. And that was nice.

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