Ugh, connections can be the bane of travel. Your last sentence made me laugh though.Really like that photo you took of the paddlewheels at the rear of the steamboat. Not something you'd see every day.
Ha! Been there. I recall one time I had a late, connecting flight up to LaGuardia. Like yourself, I was probably back around row 18, and freaking out because it took people so long to depart. I literally had about 5 minutes to my connecting plane to Boston, and OF COURSE, the connecting flight gate was way the heck at the opposite end of the terminal.
So I'm running like crazy to get there, and twice in the overhead paging system I'm hearing my name, "Passenger (x)" please go immediately to Gate (x), your aircraft is ready for departure." I mean, they could see in the computer that my flight arrived late -- did they think I had gotten off and headed toward a bar for a leisurely cocktail, before heading to the gate??!!!