Friday, March 23, 2012

Spring Training Trip 2012 Recap-PART FIVE

Okay, I promise, this is the last part of my recap! I never dreamed I would have this much to post. It's been a lot of fun though! :)

So, our flight was supposed to leave at 12:25 on Monday from Phoenix. We figured we could go by the practice fields for about 30 minutes before we headed out (you know, because we didn't have enough pictures already). :) So, after checking out of our hotel, we headed to Surprise Stadium one last time.
Our hotel
So, a funny thing (well, kinda funny) happened while we were waiting for the gates to open. I was wearing an authentic Ben & Skin Show shirt (I got it last time they were doing their show live near my office). This guy that was standing in front of us turned around and told me that this other radio station was better than them. Now, I'm not a person who gets in heated discussions with strangers, but I may or may not have told him he was wrong and that Ben and Skin were the best sports talk radio show in the Metroplex. He disagreed. Words were exchanged. Don't worry friends, I didn't hurt him. Tonya held me back. :) In all honesty, it was a friendly disagreement, but if you know me, you know I'll defend my favorite radio duo! :)

I knew that Ben and Skin were in town that week doing their show from Surprise, they had flown in late that Sunday (not a stalker- they put that information on Twitter). I had sent them a message saying I hoped I could see them before I left (they knew I was there. I'm a big deal- they follow me on Twitter). :) Their show ends at noon Texas time, which was 10am Arizona time. I told them I had to leave the field at 10:30 in order to get back to Phoenix for my flight. They said they would do their best to find me. While we were roaming the practice fields, I found Jamey Newberg of The Newberg Report. If you are a Rangers fan, I highly recommend going to his website and signing up for his (almost) daily emails. It's free!
Jamey Newberg couldn't believe I wanted a picture with him. He said since I was wearing a Ben and Skin Show shirt he would allow it (he's friends with them).
While wandering around I saw Mark McLemore signing autographs. He played with the Rangers from 1995-1999. He now works for Fox Sports Southwest doing the pregame and post game reports for the Rangers. Of course I had to go by for a picture. 
Mark McLemore, AKA, the Doctor of Defense. I don't know why he was wearing a Rangers uniform, maybe the former players were getting together for a picture or something.
At 10:30 we had to force ourselves to leave, even though we really wanted to stay (next year we are staying a week)! As we were leaving Ben sent me a tweet saying they were looking for me. I finally found them and was able to get a picture (I can't have a Rangers Spring Training scrapbook and NOT have a picture with Ben and Skin). :)  
Ben and Skin with their biggest fan
We probably left the fields about 10:40. In our heads we kept thinking that Phoenix was about a 30 minute drive from Surprise. It wasn't. It was more like 45 minutes. Well, it would have been 45 minutes if we hadn't hit traffic. We got to the rental return about 11:40. Needless to say, we were starting to panic that we were going to miss our flight. We boarded the shuttle about 11:50 to head to the airport. 
On the shuttle bus to the airport. Tonya made those awesome name tags for us!
We got in line about noon to check in. Evidently EVERYONE was flying Southwest that day because the line was very long. This is when we started wondering what we would do if we missed our flight because I didn't see us making it. We finally got to the check in counter 10 minutes later. The lady was like, "We can't guarantee your luggage will make the flight. You are supposed to check in 45 minutes before the flight." I told her I was just hoping to make the flight. We raced to security where we got behind the slowest person on the face of the earth. When we finally got through, we waited on our bags to come through. The belt wasn't moving. The "slow guy" had something suspicious looking in his bag and three employees were looking at a computer screen trying to figure out what it was. They finally removed his bag to search it (allowing ours to come through). I told Tonya and Ashley I would run ahead (in hopes of stopping the plane from leaving- because I thought I had that kind of power). It's now 12:22. I finally get to the gate and the guy looks at me. I sheepishly hand him my boarding pass. He was like, "Rachel, Rachel, Rachel." I was like, "I'm sorry. I'm sorry." He laughed and asked if I was traveling alone. I told him my friends were on their way. He was like, "Tell Tonya and Ashley to hurry up." Yeah- he knew our names. He was about to page us. So embarrassing! :) Of course by the time we got on the plane (with everyone glaring at us for being late), there weren't three seats together. This nice couple let me sit by them (and gave me the window seat). A few minutes after I sat down, I realized my book was in my carry on bag, which I put in the storage bin. So I spent part of the flight looking out the window. I later found some Sudoku puzzles in the Southwest Airline magazine to entertain me.
Leaving Arizona...
My view..
We had a layover in San Antonio, but we weren't supposed to get off the plane. That changed when there was a mechanical issue (not on our plane, another plane, so they made us deboard and put that other flight on our plane). We not only had to deboard, but there was going to be an hour delay. The only positive thing about the delay is it allowed us to get food (seeing that we didn't have time before the flight). But, needless to say, we were ready to get home. We were exhausted.
Tired Rangers fans
Since we weren't supposed to get off the plane, they let everyone who was on the flight originally get on first. We were able to get front row seats! The flight was very short (maybe 40 minutes). When we finally landed at Love Field, we made our way to the luggage return. We knew there was a chance our luggage wouldn't make it. We saw one of Ashley's suitcases and my suitcase. We realized after a while that Tonya's suitcase and Ashley's other bag did not make the flight (which was weird since we checked the luggage at the same time). We went to the customer service booth and they said our luggage was on a plane that left Phoenix after ours, but had a stop in Austin. Thanks to our delay in San Antonio, the plane with our luggage actually landed a few minutes after ours, so we didn't have to wait long for the bags. Tonya and Ashley dropped me off at my apartment a little after 8:00 Texas time. Thanks to my sweet neighbor Donny who helped me carry my suitcase up the stairs. I was smart and had taken the next day off work, so I spent Tuesday doing nothing but resting (and catching up on my DVR watching). 
FINALLY on the plane to Dallas!
Hello leg room!
Flying over the Ballpark and Jonestown, I mean, Cowboys Stadium. We are home!!
I hope you have enjoyed this recap. Thanks for reading!! I have enjoyed your comments, tweets and emails about it!!

Have a great weekend!



  1. I waited until you were done to read them so I could see how it ended. I am so ready to go to spring training now.....I guess I will just have to settle for Opening Day. :)

  2. Hi Rachel, just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris