Lost and Stranded Travelers
A few months ago, I got a message on Facebook from Brianna Evans, a girl from my hometown, telling me she was planning a trip to Ireland, England, and Scotland with one of her friends from college. Being myself, I was more than happy to help! I told her about trains, planes, ferries, buses, tours, and what cities to stay in during her trip, but I also made a point to let her know that every traveler moves differently. I don’t get from one place to another the same way as my fellow travelers, so I didn’t want her to feel that she had to take my suggestions. They arrived in Dublin on Friday, and I met up with them Saturday morning ready to hand over my charger and point them in the right direction for the rest of their trip. Little did I know where that day was heading.
We began by going to see the Book of Kells at Trinity College. It was pretty cool to see how the binding of these old books happened and the intricate details that went into the creation of each image, but I’m not entirely sure it was worth the €9. But I digress. The three of us were wandering around the last section of the exhibit when they ask me when the next ferry was. The timetable told me the next ferry the girls could catch would leave Dublin, Ireland at 8:55pm and arrive in Holyhead, Wales after midnight. WALES! Britt and Bri had a reservation for a hostel in London, England that night they were supposed to make. In a scramble, I searched the Ryanair app for plane flights to London but nothing was remotely within their price range. They could take the late ferry, get a hostel in Wales, and hop a train over the next day, or somehow get a flight straight to London. After some Starbucks, I suggested we head to my house to make use of my laptop and get a handle on the situation.
At my house, I was able to pull up the timetables for all the trains, buses, ferries, and flights, and I was able to compare the prices between each. I couldn’t believe they had come all the way here and not researched prices, timetables, or anything! But, that’s where I came in. I can’t stand to see stranded travelers anywhere. It breaks my heart because I know how it feels to be in a sticky situation. I offered to let them crash at my place, and it worked out for the girls to book flights from Dublin to London, London to Edinburgh, and Edinburgh to Dublin. It was a mess,
but I am more than willing to help wherever needed in situations like that! It would have been great and simple if their credit cards had worked. Both Bri and Britt had difficulty putting their cards through the online booking systems. Literally about four hours later, they had their plane tickets booked and printed.
I had other plans that night but promised to meet up with them at the pub later on that evening. The three of us had a pretty good time out in Dublin that night. We’ll just leave it at that. The two of them had to leave my house at 6:15am to catch the correct bus to the airport for their 8:10am, but because of our night out, that didn’t happen. I woke up in my bed and could see light out my window. I then realized their suitcases were still in my room and put two together that they NEVER LEFT MY HOUSE FOR THE AIRPORT!! I had no idea what time it was, so I sprinted into the den waking them up. Thank the Lord it was hardly after 7:00am, and we could still salvage the situation. Eventually I found my phone and ordered them a taxi. All I remember is telling the cabby that they were flying Ryanair and had to be there as fast as humanly possible. I found out later that they made their flight by sprinting through the airport.
When you’re traveling and end up in sticky situations, sometimes the only thing you can do is barrel through. It gets rough, difficult, hard, and stressful to do all the research and planning necessary for intense travel. Every now and again, we find ourselves in situations that seem to be dire, but there is hope. There are people who are willing to go to the ends of the earth to help lost and stranded travelers all over the globe. I have been helped out of a very grim situation and am more than happy to do that for any traveler that comes in my path. You are more than welcome to crash on my couch any time!