Stranded New Jersey couple finally set to fly home Friday - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Stranded New Jersey couple finally set to fly home Friday

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PHOENIX -

Across the country nearly 20,000 flights have been canceled because of Sandy. Many people stranded were stuck at Sky Harbor Airport.

A couple from New Jersey came to Arizona to celebrate their wedding anniversary. That trip has been extended for days because of two canceled flights.

The couple was supposed to fly out Monday but their flight was canceled. Tuesday, again, their flight was canceled, so now they're scheduled to fly out Friday.

They're staying at a Quality Inn and at this point the Smegos say Arizona feels like home.

This hotel room is a temporary home to Andrea and Chris Smego. Because their flights keep getting canceled, friends have been sending them these photos of their neighborhood in Clifton, New Jersey.

"We're still under water. Like the cars were covered. It's amazing cause I can't believe that's our neighborhood and that's where I work and live, it's something you would see from New Orleans or hurricane Katrina, it's not something that our neighborhood is supposed to have," says Andrea Smego.

They say that the worst part of being stuck across the country is being far from their affected family members.

"Not being able to be back there to make sure that they're all ok, but via text we've talked to them. I know some of them are not getting very good phone signal where they're at because of the storm," says Chris Smego.

The hotel's hot tub and pool have seen a lot of the Smegos, as they try to make the most of their extended trip.

"They're getting pounded with rain and snow back there and were getting zero rain, you just can't make that stuff up."

But the couple of two years is ready for a return to reality.

"Yeah I'll give up that pool any day."

The Smegos are prepared to face the destruction back home and help their community recover.

"I think it's going to be hard, you know, just to get back to normal. We saw what Irene did to a lot of the neighbors."

The couple has spent at least a thousand dollars that they weren't expecting to on this trip. Their next flight is scheduled for Friday morning.

Both of them have no idea when they'll be back at work because their offices were flooded.

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