Friday, April 30, 2010


I don’t want to talk badly about any one city, but over the years, I have decided that it will be a personal goal of mine to never fly through Detroit again. I can’t remember a time when I have flown into or out of that city when there hasn’t been a problem of some sort.
On this particular day, in July of 2006, Kari, Val and I arrived into the airport on time and without incident. We checked the flight monitors and found the gate for our connecting flight to Amsterdam. We assumed we would run into the rest of the team without having to track them down.
Sure enough, as we were getting closer to our gate, someone shouted something at us. They had recognized the tags on our carry-on luggage which we had gotten at one of our team meetings in anticipation of the trip.
The Reese family - dad Jon, mom Cathy, daughter Sara and son Carson – had arrived earlier from Indiana. They had already met up with Amanda, a teen-ager who had flown in from Pennsylvania. We had met Michelle, from Iowa, and Geoff and his son Brandon, from Madison, at team meetings and recognized them as soon as we saw them.
Since no one else seemed to know what had happened to Brie and someone else had her phone number, I was elected to call her. Her mother answered the phone and told me that Brie was at work. Hmm? I thought, but didn’t say anything to her mom, as I took down her work number.
Brie was available to talk when I called her at work. Somehow she had mixed up her dates and didn’t think we were leaving until two days later. I told her she should check her information, but that if she had thought she was going to fly with us, she had missed the plane. I said that I was sure Dave would come up with some way for her to get to Africa and that he would call her soon.
That meant that now the only ones missing from the team were our team leaders, Jen and Dave Bell and their son Nate. Dave called Jon on his cell phone to say that their flight out of Ohio had been delayed. It was estimated they would arrive in Detroit at 5:45 pm and our plane was supposed to leave for overseas at 5:35 pm. It would take a time warp to get them to us on time. That, or an act of God.

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