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Back when I was 18, I embarked on my first work abroad experience in the US. Everything was thoroughly planned. Visa in hand, bags packed, meeting with the employer at the airport were all set.
What could possibly go wrong? More than people think. As the agency was going to pick me up from the airport, I didn’t even bother to check for other options in case something happened. Which it did.
After an eventful Dallas-New Orleans flight, we landed at 1o pm to a completely deserted New Orleans airport arrivals lounge except for a couple of families and a limo driver there was no one. Jetlagged and still slightly in shock from the flight, I asked the limo driver if he could call the company for me. He did but who’d be there at 10 PM?
After a while, I decided to sleep at the airport and figure things out in the morning (that was before smartphones and free Wi-Fi btw). I had already settled into my airport bench, when the limo driver came overlooking for me.
He wanted to tell me, that if I wanted, he could give me a ride to a hotel he knew around the corner on his way home. It was a very small deed but at the time it felt like the whole world to me. I’ll never take anything for granted again or go about without a plan B!