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A few months back, I booked my flights to and from Nashville for my buddy’s bachelor party. For my Sunday returner, I chose a 7:05PM direct flight. My logic? A morning flight I wouldn’t have made, and afternoon was expensive as shit. I’ll book the later one, have a day of relaxation in Nashville, and fly home rested that night.
I was wrong. Instead of the lovely day I’d foolishly imagined, for a variety of reasons I’m staring down the barrel of nine hours in this airport with a crippling hangover. Morale is low.
I’m writing this live and hoping that its title is eventually something along the lines of “I Survived Nine Hungover Hours in the Airport” and not “One Of Our Writers Died Of A Hangover In The Airport, This Is His Final Written Statement.” Come ride with me on this journey through hell.
Needless to say, I’m fucking reeling right now. My buddies just dropped me off at the airport with a massive hangover and “Did I kill someone last night?” anxiety. The only thing left in my stomach is roughly 1500 fluid ounces of Miller Lite and the coffee I had for breakfast.
If you’re thinking, “Why don’t you just go somewhere else?” just stop. There’s nowhere in public that I deserve to be besides the hellhole of this international airport, and I’m not lugging this suitcase around the city. We’re here for the long haul.
By here, I don’t even mean through security. I can’t check my bag for another five hours, so your boy is posted up sitting on the floor next to an outlet shaking like a crack fiend. Going to catch up on this week’s episode of Oysters, Clams, and Cockles and just try to keep existing.
I relocated to the restroom for a bit because my bowels were barking it me. Thank God I was fortunate enough to walk in right as some poor bastard is heaving in one of the stalls. Took my hangover up 47 notches and made me wonder if I should just cry for the next eight hours.
There’s a large sign for The Johnny Cash Museum and the picture of ole’ John is just staring directly at me shaming me for being such a piece of shit. DMX’s “Where The Hood At” just came on my Spotify shuffle and I’ve never had less energy for this song as I do now. I’m a shell of the drunken asshole who was doing DMX barks from my seat on a peddle pub less than 48 hours ago.
A small child just fucking stepped on my leg. I don’t even blame him. That leg had been asleep for fifteen minutes anyways.
“What Do You Mean” popped up on my Spotify shuffle and I NEED Justin to pull me out of this. Still two hours away from even being able to check my bag and go through security. Trying to decide if I should eat something at Starbucks or go puke in the bathroom.
Going to attempt to turn the tide with some positivity. Made a huge play by grabbing a rocking chair to sit in; going to relax and stream The Pacific, because reading the book I’ve got on my Kindle just isn’t going to work in the mental state I’m in.
Going with The Pacific was huge for personal morale, as was seeing a group of dudes walk past that were in worse shape than me; shades on inside and looking like death was upon them.
Another visit to a restroom put me in the vicinity of the sounds of explosive diarrhea. We need to talk about airport restrooms as potentially one of the top-five worst places in the world. Each trip to one has made my hangover worse. Alcohol shakes in full effect.
In a miserable turn of events, my flight has been delayed forty minutes, thus also pushing my ability to check my bag in by forty minutes. Why do bad things happen to good people?
As I collect myself with my third cup of coffee, I also wonder why the takeoff was delayed by forty minutes, but the estimated landing time only by twenty? Looking forward to seeing what this pilot and his apparent lead foot do with my fragile stomach tonight.
I’ve made a friend. I don’t know his name, because my hangover has sapped all my social skills, but he’s sitting two seats down from me and is here to see the eclipse. Doesn’t have any trace of a hangover. I’m beyond envious.
Security Cleared/Hour Six
Through security and my cumbersome bag is now checked which is big time. Starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Time to put some good advice to use.
— Kyle Bandujo (@kylebandujo) August 20, 2017
Just when I get some momentum, things start crashing down around me like I’m on the Titanic and the last lifeboat just left. No Chili’s in this airport. Beyond devastated, I’m going to have to regroup and get my bearings because frankly I didn’t see this coming.
Just got an email that my credit score went down. When it rains it pours, folks.
Have to throw out the biggest shoutout to O’Charley’s. Frankly, I thought I’d never survive without Chili’s, but O’Charley’s stepped up like a backup QB and managed to lead me down the field on a scoring drive. A large water and some chicken tenders later and I’m at least back to replacement level, although my alcohol shakes aren’t going anywhere.
In other positive news, my flight now has a set gate, with seats that have outlets. Huge for all my devices. There’s a good chance I actually make it out of here alive.
Home stretch baby. I’ve never wanted to actually get on a plane so bad. I keep staring at the 7:05 boarding time like it’s the clock in my college algebra class and I’m begging it to move faster.
One of the employees working the gate decided that he wanted to sing the boarding instructions. I mean, I’m all for someone having enthusiasm at their job, but boarding Southwest is like the Hunger Games. We’re all sitting there unsure of our seat location or row-mates, and it’s too tense to sing at a time like this.
Also starting to have the anxiety of work Monday morning start to mix with being in the air while Game of Thrones is airing.
At least three people sitting near me have noticed that I’ve got the shakes from a three day diet of booze and fried food. There’s zero doubt that this has been the toughest endurance stretch of my life. My own personal Iron Man.
There’s some satisfaction of sticking it out, feeling like Rocky in the 14th round, just taking slug after slug, barely able to see because my eyes are so swollen (my whole body has been bloated by alcohol). Might honestly raise my hands and high five people when I finally board.
I’ve made it. I actually made it. Maybe God was smiling down on me, but I scooped an aisle seat with no one in the middle and am as far away from the multiple babies on this flight as possible.
As I leave my home of nine hours, I think of a slight reversal of an old phrase: Don’t cry because it happened; be happy because it’s over. If I can survive nine hungover hours in an airport, I can survive anything. .
Image via BravoKiloVideo / Shutterstock.com