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All was well with the world of airline travel until we attempted to leave Dulles airport. Tammy was scheduled to leave first, just a few hours after we arrived. I had a seat on a 5 o’clock flight, and opted to go stand-by on one that left a few hours earlier. We had a quick breakfast/lunch and said our good-byes.

Tammy’s flight boarded as scheduled, but had to wait for mechanical problems. Something with the brakes or landing gear I thought she said. They had one false take-off (went up and came right back down) which I’m sure was a bit off-putting, but Tammy made it to her next connection and is home safe and sound. I think her total travel time was 37 hours.

I didn’t get a seat on the earlier standby flight, so waited at the airport for the one I booked. There were, of course, mechanical issues with the plane and we would be boarding half an hour late. Still issues, wait another hour. Waiting on a part to come in on another plane… now we are waiting for the clearance to leave. My flight took off 4 and a half hours later than scheduled which got me home cranky and tired. I think my total travel time was 40 hours.

The exciting thing is neither of us suffered “jet lag” going either direction. Our secret – set your watch to the new time zone when you step into the airport and live by it. Then of course it helps to arrive at your destination in time to go to bed for the night and be exhausted enough to fall asleep.

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Jennifer Vanderlaan CNM MPH is the author of the BirthingNaturally.net website. She has been working with expectant families since 2000, training doulas, childbirth educators, and midwives. She has worked with midwives in Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Her interest in public health grew in 2010, and she is now a PhD student learning to become a producer of knowledge.

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