I'm a newbie, and I just had the typical newbie experience: a vigorous fermentation blew the top off my airlock, and it flooded with wort. Not too much on the ceiling, but there you have it. I thought the batch was ruined, but after some research I saw that I could just clean off the airlock (after finding the parts again), resanitize it and put it back on.
Here's my question: there was a pretty good lag time between when the airlock blew its top and when I finally put it back on; I estimate twelve to fifteen hours. I didn't have enough time to set up a blow-off tube before I had to leave for work, so the carboy was open and exposed during that whole stretch (albeit through a very small tube). I've read posts that stated that the rate at which CO2 is leaving the fermenter at this point pretty much stops anything else from getting in, but I can't tell for how long that's the case. Is this batch totally ruined?
Thanks in advance for your patience, understanding, and advice.