My Lucky Charm

by

Laura Garcia Cannon

Brent and I trade off every year whose parents’ house we get to spend Christmas with when we actually get the holiday off. (Remember news happens every day – someone has got to work!) This year we were fortunate enough to have the time off and it was time to head home to Brent’s Mom’s house in Denver, Colorado. Brrrr. Yes, Denver in the height of its blizzards of ’06. In the days prior to our departure, after every news story we’d do, or live report we’d take, we’d glance at each other with the look of what are we getting ourselves into? Our flight was supposed to leave within 24 hours of the 5,000 people stranded at Denver International Airport. Oh did I mention we also were taking our puppy Chip? We thought it was such a great idea in August when we made our reservations! Now I pictured the three of us stranded in an airport sleeping in chairs. Would I have to bring dog food? Was this all wishful thinking that our flight would even leave? Five flights surrounding our departure time were canceled. But somehow, ours was a go! So, we loaded Chip up and took off prepared for quite possibly a very very long trip. I can’t believe it, but it was a breeze. Chip was treated to a free ride, posed for pictures with police officers, got a Jr. K-9 badge, this traveling with the dog thing during a blizzard is easy!! We arrived in Denver no problem and waited only a few minutes to get to a gate.

On the other end, coming back, ironically, another storm was going to hit. We had to get out of dodge fast! When we got to the Denver Airport the lines snaked around for miles!!! It was a three hour minimum to check your bags in which meant most people were going to miss flights! Chip to the rescue, we got sent to the “odd size packages” line (which we thought was going to be another long wait) but it was a whopping three minute wait! The baggage attendant thought Chip was so cute he could go for free, exclaiming, “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!” as she stapled a big “paid” sign to his carrier. Our flight was easily changed to an earlier departure and we once again had time to spare. Our biggest challenge was trying to put him in the carrier as airline workers kept telling us to take him out so they could see him. Chip was our lucky charm on what could have been a very long potentially stranded trip. He’s going everywhere with us now!

Laura Garcia Cannon
NBC11 Anchor

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