Where do I start? The Wharton interview trip is a good place to start. This was the plan:
Get to the airport early.
Get a good night's sleep in NYC.
Wake up at the crack of dawn to catch a train to Philly.
Eat breakfast near campus.
Interview with a Wharton AdCom member.
Meet up with a Undergraduate Alum
Take the train back to New York and go to Del Frisco's.
Here is what actually happened:
I had every intention on getting to the airport on time. Unfortunately, I ended up staying at the office later than expected and I still had to pick up medicine for the allergy attack from hell. The pharmacy had not received my re-fill authorization and I couldn't get my medicine. I got on the highway and eventually ended up in a never ending stream of bumber-to-bumper traffic. Keep in mind that my office is only 6 miles from the airport. With 40 minutes until departure, I figured that I would still make it. Now its 30 minutes until departure and I still have 4 miles to go. At this point, I started to panic. With 20 minutes to go, I decided to take another route. I eventually made it to the terminal. As I walked up to the counter, I was overtaken by the sight of my plane pulling away from the gate. A certain 4-letter word that starts with "s", ends with "t" and has "it" in the middle began to flow through my mind like a hurricane's wind. Luckily, I could fly standby. I found a cute wine bar in my terminal, had a glass of Reisling and listened to my Ipod as I waited for the next plane.
I ended up getting to New York at 11:30 pm. I reached my final destination at about 12:00 am. This meant that I would get about 4.5 hours of sleep after I unpacked my suit and prepared for the next morning. That didn't happen. Since I couldn't breathe well due to sinus congestion issues, I only got 2 hours of sleep.
I woke up at the crack of dawn to have breakfast and decided to catch the train from Newark Penn instead of NY Penn. I lost my money for my PATH tickets on my way to the station. When I arrived at Newark Penn, I knew nothing about the station. I was informed that my ticket was for Saturday instead of Friday. Great. I had to change my ticket and pay an extra $25. I asked the Amtrak ticket agent where my train would depart from and she said "Track 4." It took me 5 minutes to find track 4. As I waited for my 7:22 train to Philly, I watched the clock. 7:15 here comes NJ Transit. 7:20 here comes NJ Transit. 7:21 no train. 7:22 no train. I went back inside and saw an Amtrak pulling away from Track 3. I asked the waving conductor if the train was going to Philly and he said, "It sure is." Here comes that 4-letter word again! Thank gosh I had my Ipod with me to calm my nerves down. I managed to get on the next train which arrived a little before 9:00 am. The cab stand line was never ending, but I finally arrived on campus at about 9:10. Unfortunately, I bought a muffin from ABP, but I didn't think that I would have time to finish it, use the restroom, and brush my teeth because I can't have muffin crumbs falling from my braces!
I turned in my resume and had a very pleasant interview. I won't know how pleasant until I receive my decision. The questions were pretty standard. You can find a wonderful list on S2S. I hung around for a little while and talked to a few students. I realized that I left the Alum's phone number on my computer in Dallas. Since I couldn't find anyone with the Alum's phone number, I moved my train departure up a few hours.
My Del Frisco's reservation was for 2:45. I figured if I got in for 1:47, that would be enought time to make it to Midtown. Well, my train was late and moved slower than I could ever imagine. To make matters worse, my congestion got worse and a whole bunch of other bad things happened. I got into Ny Penn at 2:30, which left me with enough time to get to Del Frisco's by cab. The problem was I couldn't get a cab if life depended on it. I ended up walking from 33 and 7th to 49 and 6th. I'm sure my Gucci loafers would have a few choice words for me if they could talk. Anyway, I made it Del Frisco's a few minutes late. I ended up sitting at my usual table and having a wonderful lunch for a discounted lunch price!
I was very sick on Saturday and too weak to go into the city. Therefore, I didn't get to hang out with most of my friends or see the city lit up for Christmas.
For all you future Wharton applicants reading this blog, the morals of the story are as follows:
Be on time for your airplane departure.
Don't trust the Amtrak ticket agent no matter what. If you do, you will end up somewhere in He Haw, South Jersey.
Bring a snack for the train in case you aren't able to have breakfast.
Carry your fully-charged Ipod with you at all times. It is more than a wireless, portable jukebox!
Never assume that you will be able to get a cab to Midtown.
Well, that's it for me today.