Misadventure #2: Trip to Oswego, IL

ND with OHS director Stephanie SiloskyWhen I initially started this blog, I had every intention of using it to share various stories of my adventures (and misadventures) while traveling to and from gigs all over the country. As you might gather from the number in the title of this post, I have not stayed true to my blog mission. The first "misadventure," titled Lip-Syncing for Percussionists 101 was posted back in mid-December 2008. Yeesh. So, a year & a half later, here ya go... Misadventure #2.

I'm in Oswego, IL – a village of 29,000 people just an hour drive from Chicago – where my new piece Imagining World is being premiered tonight by the Oswego High School Wind Ensemble, directed by Stephanie Silosky. Fortunately, the misadventures on the trip do not at all involve the performing group. This band is really fantastic and are playing the heck out of all the music on their program. No, my misadventures are the result of several moments of absent-mindedness on my part, starting with my travel day yesterday.

1) On the other two parts of my trip (Norman, OK and Pittsburgh, PA) I'll be performing David Gillingham's 2nd marimba concerto which requires the soloist to play with two contrabass bows, so I brought mine with me in a cardboard tube a little longer than 1 yard. For each leg of my various flights, I'm throwing the tube in the overhead bin. After checking in for my flight at RDU, I was almost to the security checkpoint when I realized that I was missing an item. Yep, the tube was leaning against the ticket counter waiting for me.

2) Arrived in Philly where I had a short layover, but was going to be on the same plane. I assumed that I would re-board this plane at the same gate. I went and used the facilities, got back to the gate and realized I had once again left the tube behind, this time at the gate. 

3) I was just sitting there at the gate, which was eerily empty except for the gate attendant. I asked when we would be boarding for Chicago. He asked "You mean for Boston?" Nope. Chicago. Just got off the plane and they told me we would be re-boarding here. He informed me that they were boarding that flight several gates down around the corner and they were doing so now. Nearly missed my second flight altogether.

4) Arrived in Chicago where my mind was immediately on going to pick up my rental car. Waited 20 minutes for the shuttle to take me to Thrifty. We were heading out of the airport when horror came over me. Here's generally how that conversation went:

Me [frantically]: Can you please let me off?!
Driver: Yes, of course. What's the problem?
Me: I left my suitcase behind.
Driver: Where, on the sidewalk outside the shuttle?
Me: Nope, I never picked it up from baggage claim! 

The suitcase was sitting there smiling at me at the USAir baggage office in Terminal 2.

5) Finally, this morning I was thinking ahead to tomorrow when I'll be flying from Chicago to Oklahoma City. Checked online to see which terminal I needed to go to at O'Hare for Frontier Airlines. Not found. But there are some Frontier gates at Midway Airport. Yeah, that's right. I got a rental car from O'Hare that also need to be returned to O'Hare without realizing that I was flying out of Midway. Fortunately, Thrifty is letting me return the car to Midway with no penalty fee.

That's all for now. I'm hoping tomorrow is a smoother day of travel. For now, the tube is with me, I have a place to take the rental car, and I have many people I'm looking forward to seeing and hanging out with in Oklahoma over the weekend.