What a day. I started off this morning walking the three blocks to the RER, which didn’t seem like a big deal. I’d done it lots of times. But with baggage it was much more difficult because the entire three blocks was on an uphill slope. Oh, the things we don’t notice when we’re walking unhindered.

I get to the airport a little later than expected, so I’m already a bit irritable. Then I get to the gate and the woman tells me my flight is cancelled. NOT what I want to hear at 8 a.m. She can’t tell me whether they’ll be able to put me on another flight and directs me to go to the ticket counter, which is conveniently nowhere near the check-in counter. Once at the ticket counter I’m stuck behind all of the other angry passengers, while ONE guy works to change everybody’s flights. After about an hour, and cursing at several French people for trying to cut in line, I get helped and am put on a flight with Continental instead of my original airlines, American. The good news: I get home 1.5 hours early. The bad news: I have no money, no cell phone and no internet access to tell Tony. Yay!

Then I get in line to check-in and they tell me my ticket isn’t valid. Now I get to go wait in line at another ticket counter! Woo hoo! In the meantime I weigh my baggage and find out that one of my bags is 20 pounds overweight. I station myself at the nearest garbage bin and begin chucking out all of the clothes I really probably won’t ever wear but I always keep for some reason. I also had to throw out my huge, and always reliable, French-English Dictionary. I get my ticket. I get to the check-in counter. My bag is still 8 pounds over, but is easily lightened by removing a pair of jeans, a winter jacket and a blazer. I keep my pea coat with me and throw out the jeans and blazer. Tony owes me lots of new clothes (my bag was over because I’m carrying tons of his stuff, including a heavy leather jacket and a bottle of absinthe. Just sayin).

I get stopped a million times by security and keep praying they won’t catch me for overstaying my visa. Thank God nobody questions me for that. The nicest person I’ve seen today was the customs guy who still scared me to death. I almost had to get strip searched at the security point because I beeped even though I have nothing in my pockets, nor am I wearing a belt or any jewelry. Also, they found my water bottle in my bag and made me take it out to prove it was empty. That’s what I get for being cheap and refusing to pay for water when I know I can get it free out of a water fountain once I pass security.

But all of that is nothing compared to the highlight of the day: fishing my passport out of a toilet full of my own urine. No, I’m not joking. In Houston I only had 45 minutes to get to my connecting flight so I was rushing through customs and put my passport in my back pocket while I re-checked my baggage. Then I ran to the bathroom to pee and change my t-shirt and when I stood up to pull up my pants I heard something fall. When I turned around I saw my passport floating with the toilet paper. I reached in there without even thinking and began drying that sucker off with toilet paper. Luckily it wasn’t too water-logged. All I can say is: I’m grateful I didn’t have to take a dump.

So it was an adventure-filled day, but it ends with good news, which is I’m home! And the weather is beautiful. And I had a warm shower. So warm that I’m too hot to blowdry my hair. Ah, it’s good to be home.

See you all super soon!