Janathon survives arctic pilgrimmage to O’Hare

Grandpa and Rowan waiting on her flight to Spain at O'Hare.
Grandpa and Rowan waiting on her flight to Spain at O’Hare.

In 7 days of Janathon, my most prevalent activity so far has been: Snow shoveling. I’ve also run two days and did a bit of walking. On Monday, when we were completely snowed in and it was something like 15-below, I did aerobic steps while watching “Miss Marple at the Bertram Hotel.” (Colleen and I are huge Agatha Christie fans. Imagine our delight to discover a “Dr. Who” episode featuring an encounter with Agatha Christie.)


Rowan and I at the airport. We’re going to miss her, but we’re glad she had this opportunity to go overseas. Always wished I’d done that when I was in school.

Tuesday seemed like it might be the biggest challenge yet. We needed to get Rowan up to O’Hare to catch a flight to Spain for Jan term, but it was highly unclear we could make it. Grandpa was planning to drive us up in his SUV, but he was still snowed in Monday evening. Finally one of the neighborhood farmers came by and plowed him out. We threw a bunch of cold weather gear in his Explorer and took off about 4 a.m. with the temperature at 17-below.

The wind had died down so there wasn’t any blowing snow to worry about, and hardly any other vehicles to run into, but the roads were extremely slick — all packed down snow and ice. We drove about 40 mph most of the way through northern Indiana until we got over the Skyway, when road conditions improved considerably. Even then, every time we came to an overpass there was a crashed car that had spun out on the ice.

The trip that normally takes about 4 hours took us closer to 7 this time, but since we’d left so early we made it with time to spare. Then began the big wait. You’re supposed to check in 3 hours early for an Iberia Airlines flight, and Rowan’s professor wanted his students there a couple of hours before that to deal with any contingencies.  But being stuck at an airport is never an excuse not to exercise because you can always walk. After that grueling drive, it felt good to stretch my legs walking up and down Terminal 3.

Our drive home Tuesday night felt like it took almost as long as Rowan’s flight overseas. (I’d also learned I’d be coming home to a house with no water, after a pipe burst early Tuesday morning.) But it was a huge relief to deliver her to the airport on time, and it felt good to keep Janathon going in spite of everything.

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6 Responses to Janathon survives arctic pilgrimmage to O’Hare

  1. Last year I found myself walking around London Heathrow in the name of Janathon! It’s amazing what it gets you to do. Hope the temperature starts rising for you soon.

    • tischcaylor says:

      Hmm… wonder how many other people walking around airports are secretly Janathoning? Temp rising today, but not enough to melt crap on the roads, however. My kids’ school canceled again tomorrow — 4th day in a row…

  2. kayreusser says:

    I’m a huge Agatha Christie fan too! We’ll have to compare notes sometime about our fave Christie actors/actresses.

  3. tischcaylor says:

    Colleen gave me her book of Agatha Christie short stories to take along to the airport, so I read “The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman'” while we were there. Haven’t seen many movies, just getting into that aspect of it.

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