Are you saying we could be stuck in Wichita? I'm not saying you could be stuck in Wichita, I'm saying you are stuck in Wichita.
Or Providence...or Richmond, or wait, is it Charlottesville? Maybe it's going to be Fredericksburg.
If you've ever seen the great Steve Martin and the late, great John Candy, you know those lines are from "Planes, Trains & Automobiles."
And it's kind of the feeling many of us had during the last 24 to 72 hours.
It was soon after a big 79-70 BIG EAST road win over Providence on Tuesday night that the fun really began.
Accompanied by Senior Director of Communications Bill Shapland, we escorted John Thompson III and three of our players - Chris Wright, Julian Vaughn and Greg Monroe - to the interview room. As soon as we were done there, everyone knew the drill - get dressed as quickly as possible and get out of Dodge...in this case, Providence.
When we left D.C. on Monday afternoon - I had stayed at a hotel in downtown D.C. from Friday through Monday because my street in Bethesda wasn't plowed after Snowmageddon, Part I - everyone packed for a few days knowing that yet another winter storm was approaching the Nation's Capital.
The plan all along was to go and get home. When we got to the arena Tuesday night, the most oft-asked question was, 'Can we still land?' Right after the game, we were told we were going.
Then, at about 9:30 p.m., just about 10 minutes after we were told we were going to the airport, we received word that Dulles was closed, Richmond Airport was not an option and that we were checking back into the hotel. When the team left their hotel, they had not checked out, but upon returning, their keys would not work and everyone had to be re-checked in, which took nearly 45 minutes.
Now, when we got back to the hotel, the thought process was that we might take a train back to D.C. Going to bed, I figured we'd be stuck in Providence until Thursday.
That lasted until about 8 a.m., when Coach Thompson called me to tell me that we were leaving at 9:15 and flying out - either to Dulles, Richmond or Charlottesville - at 10 a.m. I rounded out the traveling part of support staff and we hustled to the airport.
Soon after the team boarded, just after 10 a.m., the pilots came on and told us that Richmond was closed. The steward gave us the option of heading into the flight base office and relaxing in the pilot lounge. Coach Thompson, Interim Director of Athletics Dan Porterfield (and his daughter Lizzie) and radio voice Rich Chvotkin all went inside and about two minutes later, I did, figuring I could finish that first cup of coffee for the morning.
As soon as I walked off the plane, Rich was walking back out of the office and told me we were taking off. A few of the players gave me surprised looks as I walked back 45 seconds later, but off we were to Richmond. The pilot said it was an 80-minute flight and that it would be a smooth trip back.
We made our descent into Richmond, but the pilot came on and said that Air Traffic Control radioed him to tell him that the runways were closed for cleaning and that we would have to wait 15-20 minutes before landing. We waited, and waited a bit more, and about 30 minutes later, Air Traffic said that it would take another 30 minutes. The pilot came on and said that since Dulles was closed, and since we didn't have enough fuel to wait and land in Richmond, we were going to land in Charlottesville.
Finally, at about 12:20 pm., we landed in Charlottesville....and that's where we are now. Well, now I'm on the bus with the team and we are leaving Charlottesville and headed north. We're going to try and get back to D.C., but could end up stopping along the way if it gets too bad.