This week, I realized that my family eats a lot more pork than I had recognized.
This epiphany came when I offered bacon to the Jewish boy from California then had pulled pork in the crock pot when the two Muslim boys from Dubai showed up. But I wasn't expecting the guys from Dubai, until they missed their flight home.
Their story is a comedy of errors.
Medhi is a friend of Spencer's who goes to OU. He came home with Spencer for Thanksgiving and missed the bus back to OU because he was standing inside the bus station when the driver walked out to the bus, climbed in and drove away. Medhi ran after the bus waving, like a bad sit com scene. Then he called us to come pick him up, and he spent another night with us.
So on Friday morning, I drove Spencer's friend from California to the airport. He was early, but it fit our schedule.
I set off on another round-trip drive to Ohio University to pick up Tucker and all of his belongings, since he has decided not to return.
Once I got home and we had unpacked the car, I got ready to go teach my evening class at a local university. That's when Spencer's phone rang.
"What?" I heard him say. He repeated it a few more times then said, "I'll be there to get you."
"I have to take the car to work," I called out to Spencer.
"Catch a taxi here," Spencer said. "I'll text you my address."
So Spence explained to me that Medhi and Al, another student from Dubai, had missed their flight. They missed their flight because they missed the GoBus from Athens.
The story came out a little backward, but this is how I've pieced it together.
Medhi and Al were at Ohio University, ready to take the GoBus which drives from Athens straight to the airport.
Medhi and Al were at the top of the hill behind the building when they realized that the bus would pick them up at the bottom. Rather than hopping on the escalators, they asked someone to drive them to the front of the building. The roads are rather circuitous to get around to the front of the building and by the time they arrived, the bus had gone.
The two of them paid a taxi driver $200 to take them to the airport in Columbus, about 90 miles away.
Their flight was at 3:30 p.m. They made it to the airport, through security and to the gate by 3:20, but were told the plane had already boarded. They could see the plane through the window, but the airline personnel refused to open the door again.
That's when they sought refuge in our basement for the night.
We were glad to give them a place to stay, but that morning, long before I took the first guy to the airport or drove to pick up Tucker, I had placed a pork roast in the crock pot, covered it with barbecue sauce and planned to serve pulled pork for dinner.
That's why the guys from Dubai might have been a little hungry that night. I didn't know though, because I was gone to work when they arrived.
Late that night, as I lay in bed, I heard them talking.
"We will stay right by the gate! We will not go anywhere," Medhi said.
I knew he was determined to make that first flight from Columbus to Detroit. Then they would board a plane from Detroit to Amsterdam. Then Amsterdam to Dubai.
"We have a very long lay over in Amsterdam," Medhi said the next morning at the dining room table.
"Oh, maybe you could go see the city..." I started. Then I stopped myself, "No. Don't leave the airport. Just stay there and wait for your flight!"
They weren't interested in breakfast, but I gave them some strong coffee spiced for winter in little blue and white espresso cups,
before my husband drove them off to the airport. They were not scheduled to reach home until Sunday evening, but I'm sure their families will be thrilled to see them.
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