Lileks: Long layover? Take this tour ... if you dare
- Article by: JAMES LILEKS
- Star Tribune
- September 26, 2011 - 6:58 AM
Most of us don't spend much time at the airport -- we just shuffle shoeless through security, get a $9 sandwich, board and go.
If you're transferring, though, you may find a five-hour stretch a bit dull, unless some laptop users get into a fistfight over a power outlet. (The airport promises it will increase the number to four next year.)
So why not get out and see the town?
Starting next month, a company called MSP Tours will offer tours on the light rail for folks facing long layovers. For $27.50 you get tickets to attractions, coupons and an audio guide. The press release says the audio-tour includes an intro from the mayor "ensuring every traveler gets to explore the city like a local." True, that; locals can't go ANYWHERE these days without the mayor tagging along, nattering about some historical fact or landmark.
But it's a hard sell, getting people out of the airport. At least for me: I assume the worst.
The plane could be early and they'd give my seat away, but my luggage goes and I can't find an outlet to charge my phone, so I can't tell my family and they assume I'm dead, and when I finally get home my wife has remarried and the kids are calling him Dad.
Yeah, you say, but it's a nine-hour layover. At least go outside and get some fresh air. But then I have to go through security, and what if the TSA agent gropes me inappropriately? Fine. Sit there and watch CNN, then.
Here's the thing: The trips are described as a three-hour tour. Sound like a TV sitcom theme you know? "A threeee-hour tour."
The weather started getting rough / the tiny train was tossed / if not for the courage of the fearless crew, and the fact that the vehicle was confined to static, embedded infrastructure / the light rail would be lost.
But a tornado could carry the train away, and drop it at Lake of the Isles.
So if you're taking the tour and passengers include an academic type, a movie star, a rich couple and a perky girl-next-door, GET OFF THE TRAIN, because this means you are Gilligan, and you will ruin it for all.
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