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The Friendly Skies, My Ass!!! PDF Print E-mail
Written by Deborah Hamlin   
Sunday, 09 May 2010 08:04

I know I can’t be the only person who doesn’t like to travel.   I especially hate air travel.   Why?   Because there are too many rules and no matter how well prepared I may think I am, there will be at least one person at the airport who will prove me wrong.   I can have all the necessary information and items allowed, yet still end up playing the game of 'Hurry Up And Wait'.
It began from Jackson, MS to Kansas City, Mo, to visit a friend, and this was the return trip back.   I packed accordingly and arrived at the precise time designated, some, ohhh, three hours before the flight, I think.   I sat and waited.   And waited.   Finally, about a half an hour before the flight, an announcement was made that the flight would be delayed about an hour.
Sigh.   All I could do was wait….and wish I’d eaten before I left the house.
45 minutes later, another announcement was made stating that the plane was still not here.   It was under maintenance and running just a little behind schedule, they assured us, but they’ll let us know as soon as the plane pulls in.
More time passed and eventually, an announcement that was more like a confession came over the intercom.
“Okay,”  she said. “We don’t have a clue where the plane is at present, but we’re thinking to just maybe put you people on another plane so you can make the connecting flight from Memphis to Jackson.   Sound good?”
Everybody looked at everybody else.   There was a murmur of agreement.   So, they told us to go to the counter of another airline, and we would receive new tickets.   Everyone complied, and we took our turns standing in line for our new tickets.   When I went through security the second time, the guard eyed my ticket, then me, then the ticket again.

“Didn’t you come through here before?”  he asked.
“Yes,”   I said.   “I was on United then.   The flight is late, and they gave me another ticket.”
“But this is for a different airline.”
I kept waiting for him to explain why this was of any importance, but apparently, Barney Fife wanted to keep the mystery going.
“We don’t allow for passengers to switch airlines,”   he said.
“I’m not switching,”  I explained.   “The airline did.   They can’t find the plane, so they sent all the passengers to get new tickets for another airline.”
He looked at me as though this was too ridiculous to comprehend.
“I’m serious,”   I said.   “What…you think I arranged for 80 other people to go along with me just to irritate you?”
He sternly ordered me into another room where I would have to undergo another--and more thorough--security check.   I had to remove my leather boots.   Oooh.
Now, I once was detained in Amaan, Jordan for setting off alarms in an airport and had to undergo a REALLY thorough security check with armed guards watching, so do your worst, Barney.
I, and all the other passengers, had to remove most of what we had and spread our legs to have a wand run over us.   Big deal.   Most of my dates are about like that.
Okay, that’s a joke…..
But anyway, Barney Fife was disappointed to find nothing hidden on me and let me pass again to the next stage of air travel.   Which was more waiting.
An hour went by, then another.
It was now evening and my noon flight still had not taken off.
Eventually, I did make my flight….but my luggage did not.
I arrived in Jackson, MS with nothing more than the chapstick in my pocket.
I was advised to wait until the next flight to see if my luggage was perhaps on that.
No such luck.
Eventually, I gave up waiting and rented a car.   My five-hour flight had turned into a 14 hour ordeal, and I was now on a mission to find a hotel and a bed in thirty minutes or less.   Perhaps I should have consulted my ex-husband.   He was an expert at that…..
Minutes later, my luggage arrived, and I saw it was a little more battered than when it left Kansas City.   I pulled my suitcase behind me as I walked through the football field of a parking lot and noticed that it was getting harder and harder to pull it.   I looked behind me and saw that the wheels had come off about 50 feet back, and I was practically making grooves in the pavement as sparks flew behind me.
I managed to drag my suitcase the rest of the way, stopping momentarily to allow the smoke to settle behind me while I searched for the rental car.
I found it.
It was the one with the dead battery.
The next few minutes were a blur, which is probably best that it should be.
I went storming back inside the airport to the counter.   Well, as much as One can storm while dragging a lopsided suitcase with no wheels on it.   I’d like to see them buff that off the floor…
I stood waiting at the counter for a rental representative and watched all the late night bleary eyed travelers still waiting for their flights, when I heard a familiar announcement overhead.
“The flight is undergoing maintenance and will be running behind schedule, but we’ll let you know as soon as it pulls in…..”

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Mean Dean - 05-12-2010 12:44

Holy Moly Batwoman....Kansas City is only 737 miles, or a 10 or ll hour drive on the Interstates. However, I assume that the adventureous "Driving Disaster Dame," decided to try the safer wild blue yonder. "Can't switch airlines?" That's new! Methinks good ole Barney "Frisky Fife" & his magic wand, just wanted you to assume the position, including "boots on the ground." Sounds like a foot fetish for "Frisky Fife" to me. :whistle: I surmise that women tend to over-pack their suitcases with too many padded bras, thus an additional strain on the pair....er...of those wee wheels. (Okay, those are jokes too!) Maybe a train for the next trip!? But good grief, trains have wheels too. You may be allergic or jinxed by wheels!? Hey...let's hear about your "alarming" episode in Jordan! :unsure:
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Last Updated on Sunday, 09 May 2010 08:08