To ensure that I would not miss my connection to Dublin a second time, I had a nearly seven hour layover in Philadelphia.
So how do I spend a nearly seven hour layover?
A day before, I had asked my friend Adam who lives outside of Philly to come meet me. But it was a lot of work and Adam, like myself, is unemployed so funds are low!
Honestly, I planned to spend the layover getting a pedicure (it’s been awhile and I need it!) at the XpressSpa in the airport and researching how to get around Dublin and to London, our next stop.
I landed in Philly shortly before 2:30 p.m. I transferred to the international terminal in about 10 minutes and there didn’t appear to be much there. Side note, that US Air guy in Rochester totally lied. I could have made my connection the night before! I did NOT need 70 minutes like he said.
Next thing I know, I’m asking how to get into downtown Philly. I followed signs for a train to central Philly and it pulled up right as I walked into the station. Fate right?
Fortunately for me, it was the correct train! My luck is getting better on this trip!
Twenty-five minutes later I was in downtown Philly with Adam. We traveled together on Semester at Sea and he was one of the few who helped convince me to quit my job and do this crazy trip.
We spent about 2.5 hours at a craft beer bar sharing travel stories and reminiscing about our SAS days. He recently returned from four months in New Zealand so he has lots of travel tips to share. Tip #1, sleep when you’re dead. Which was a common saying on Semester at Sea.
I was back at the airport at seven p.m. with two hours to spare until my flight. I’ve never left the airport during a layover before but this was surprisingly really easy! I will definitely do this again in the future. It obviously helps pass the time and really took my mind off my anxiousness.
Now I am sitting at the gate with a giant bottle of water in hand ready to go. Nervous, excited, impatient, sad. Every emotion still running through me.
The plan is to meet Chelsea in Dublin and go from there. No plans, no itinerary, just go.