So My Three Sons get on a plane today bound for ATL (Atlantic City, NJ) with a quick 3-hour layover in FLL (Ft. Lauderdale). We got those cheap tickets from that brand new ULCC* start-up airline, what’s it called? Oh, right: Spirit.

Spirit has impressed the heck out of us so far. First, they lost Jacob’s luggage when he first arrived in Costa Rica. According to most everyone I’ve heard from on the topic, losing people’s luggage is par for their course. They do find it. Eventually.

I can live with lost luggage for a really cheap flight, I guess. But, for today’s fun with flying feature, they delayed the entire flight from FLL to ATL. The flight was supposed to leave FLL at 8:30; now it was leaving at 1am. Jacob’s dad was going to get to pick them up in ATL at 4am.

Fortunately, he was saved from that fate because an hour later, Spirit cancelled the flight altogether. At the very same moment that Ryan called me from the FLL airport to tell me the good news, I get a "Reservation Modification" email from Spirit announcing that the flight has been modified: instead of leaving 8/2, it’s now leaving 8/3. How efficient.

It’s nerve-wracking enough for an overprotective mom to put three teens who have never flown internationally alone before (big deal, really) on a plane, but it was ok. We had it all worked out, right? They have money, they have phones. THEY HAVE TICKETS. Despite the best laid plans, they now have 24 fun-filled hours in spring break city. Sin padres. [seen PA-drace, without parents]

OK. I’m a little nervous about the whole thing. I know they won’t die. I know they won’t sleep on the highway. I know they won’t starve. Surely the airlines will give them a hotel… but even if they don’t, there are cabs. I have credit cards and a phone. I have a cousin who lives in West Palm Beach – she would go get them if I needed her to.

But I don’t need any of that, because, as it happens, Jacob has a Guardian Rabbi! Whoa, this is excellent news. His name is David and he’s the president of Jacob’s synagogue. AND he just happens to be on the same flight from Florida to New Jersey. How likely is that?

Here’s the clincher: when Jacob was a little kid, he was on a school bus and the school bus driver lost it. He pulled the bus over to the side of the road, announced that he’d had it, he wasn’t doing this for one more minute and he left the bus! Left all those little kids – Jacob was like four – sitting on the bus! Well, David happened to be right behind that bus. How likely is THAT? He delivered Jacob home. Definitely Jacob’s Guardian Rabbi.

My boys sure picked the right traveling companion! And Spirit did give them a hotel room, shuttled them right over there, gave them breakfast and lunch vouchers and they will arrive in ATL tomorrow night. Ryan just called me from the room: they have two TVs – one is a plasma, a huge swimming pool, a kitchenette, two king beds, he has Skittles AND Mentos. That’s my baby: livin’ large.

*ULCC = Ultra Low Cost Carrier

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