Wednesday, December 17

Flight Fiasco


Mr. kenju has been wanting to go to the DC area, to visit some of his old college chums and basketball teammates, so our daughter arranged for his plane ticket and he made all the lunch and dinner plans with friends. He was leaving at 7:25 tonight (Tuesday), to be gone until next Monday, when our daughter would drive him back on her way home for the Christmas holidays. She told me that his trip was my Christmas present (she knows I need a break sometimes).

As we left home at 5:15 pm the skies were misting rain and it was chilly. I stopped at the curbside check-in, secured a wheelchair and checked the huge bag he was taking. (I'd swear it weighed 100 lbs.) We learned that the flight had been delayed until 8:25, which wasn't preferable, but not too bad. That would give me time to find some dinner before he boarded. We bravely managed our way through security; taking off coats, hats, scarves, shoes and divesting your pockets of their wares is not easy, especially for someone in a wheelchair.

We found our way to the gates, where we encountered a line of at least 35 people. I bought some dinner and as I started to eat, my cell phone rang. It was dutiful daughter, who had checked on the flight and saw that it was delayed further - to 11:15 pm. Oh, woe was us! Mr. kenju, whose evening meds make him sleepy, would never make it to after 11pm for the flight, let alone landing at midnight and then another 30 miles to drive before they got to her apartment.


I decided to go and stand in the line, to find out if the delay was correct, since the screens were still showing 8:35, and then to check on when he might fly out tomorrow. I got in line behind 2 flight attendants, who asked if there were delays. I said "Yes, and I need to find out about changing the flight until tomorrow." One of them pulled out her Blackberry and checked it for me; 11:15 was correct! She then told me that I would be better off to make any changes online, rather than at the gate. Meanwhile, my cell phone rang again. Daughter had So*thwest on the other line. We could change to a later flight, or wait until 7:00 am tomorrow. Neither of those times was acceptable to mr. kenju, so the decision was made to abort the trip then and think about it later.


I spent the next 30 minutes trying to find out in which line to stand in order to get his luggage back, and after 2 lines and advice from several agents, I finally found the right person to retrieve it - and he did. What a miracle! The phone rang again. Daughter had been told we could get him on the 9:05 plane, which was on time, but that would mean we had to go through security again and get him back upstairs to the gate in a short time.

He didn't want to go through that again. At that point, I was a mass of tangled nerves and had a sore back from tugging the luggage into and out of the car. I stationed mr. kenju at a door and went to get the car - which was quite a trek from our current spot. I picked him up and we finally made it back home. Could you blame me for feeling like a limp, wet washcloth?





28 comments:

Lisa said...

oh, you poor thing. Now you need that little vacation time even more!

ugh. I hope he gets to go on his trip and you get your downtime.

Beverly said...

That would be so frustrating. Air travel is wonderful, except when it isn't. I hope you get a break soon.

Laura said...

I think I would have collapsed when I finally got back home again. I am so sorry! I felt frustrated for you, just reading this post!

meili_lo said...

enjoy all the more! :o)

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http://shewritesyouwrite.blogspot.com/

thanks!

Jay said...

Ugh, not at all. I really think airports are designed to make wrecks out of all of us.

Maria said...

I cannot even imagine the frustration of it all. Bob and I are now convinced that train travel is the way to go almost anywhere.

I know you need your down time and with Christmas just around the corner, that probably isn't going to happen. Please try to find little moments where you can de-stress and relax.

Mar said...

Oh, no!!! and here I was thinking our friends'flight delay was bad: Mr Mar drove them to the airport at 7am last Sunday as they had an 8:30 am flight back to Germany. They had been scheduled for an evening flight without asking them...they found a flight at 1:30 pm...we could have had a nice, relaxed brunch together, but no....

Have a nice cup of hot tea!

Star said...

I feel bad for both of you. Mr. Kenju didn't get to see his buddies. And you didn't get your mini vacation. Instead you had to settle for a day at he airport.

sage said...

Oh Kenju, sorry about your troubles... but my last flight from NC to MI was bad enough that I ended up taking a bump in Atl, figuring sleeping in a hotel was better than arriving well after midnight and then having to drive home. I hope Mr. K gets to make the trip later.

Tabor said...

Traveling nowadays requires a lot of fortitude. Sorry for your stress and hopefully a less eventful trip will happen in the future.

Ginnie said...

I feel sorry for both of you. Air travel has become so frustrating and I can't imagine how it must be for someone who isn't up to snuff health-wise.
I hope the rest of your Holiday season will calm down.

Grannymar said...

How disappointing for you both.

Air travel and Technology have something in comment - They are wonderful WHEN they work!

Olyal said...

What a nightmare!
Had it been me, I think I would have exploded!

Congratulations on surviving it though!

Inanna said...

That's not even close to being funny! Here's to hoping he makes his next flight without all of the fanfare.

bobbie said...

So frustrating and difficult! This is the kind of thing I think of when someone says to me, "Oh it's easy if you just get a wheelchair."

Mojo said...

Ya know, you might have been better off just to use the ticket yourself and take an actual vacation.

Hmm... "patioun"? Isn't that Creole for "Party on"? (sometimes I just kill myself!)

Janet said...

Traveling in winter and during the holiday season to boot is never fun. Hope you're feeling better!

Evil Twin's Wife said...

Oh, I'd be a little more than just exhausted. I'd be filled with rage and would probably have made a spectacle of myself. I do that, ya know?

Nancy said...

Judy,

About air travel since 9/11. UGH!

Remember in the really good old days of flying? It was all so glamourous.Your family and friends went to the airport with you, took pictures and gave you a corsage to pin on your brand new boiled wool suit. How wonderful and exciting it all was.... Now, not so much!

I think you know that my dear husband had to have his right leg amputated due to complications of Diabetes. He now wears an artificial leg with a shoe and sock already on it. If you want to see perplexed, you have to see the Security personnel at the airport.They bark at Roy,"You gotta take them shoes off" He politely answers, "I have an artificial leg and I cannot remove my shoes." "I don't care. You gotta take them shoes off." That's what I like about them; they are so reasonable.

The last time we flew, we were in LAX and the TSA people TOOK his leg away and went into a back room with it to XRay it. That was OK but they didn't bring it back and they were calling our flight. I had to run through a door marked AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ONLY and take the chance of being arrested to get his leg back so we could board our plane. I had to enlist the aid of the LAPD to convince them to return his leg to us. It is just short of exaggeration to say that the police were reaching for their weapons to force them to let us go home.

I agree with Maria; Train travel is the only way to go.

ALL ABOARD!!!!

PI said...

I'm worried about you lugging all that luggage etc. That's how I did my shoulder and why we don't travel further than the next county. It was a lovely idea of your daughter's and I hope it will somehow come off. You need a break and it was brave of you both to attempt it. Big hugs.

Kay Dennison said...

Geeeeeeeeeeeez things like this make me crazy. Remember when airlines were reliable and not an ordeal? I am sorry both of you had to go through this. I hope you get a break soon.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

The Nightmare Of Travel! Lord...what a waste of time and energy...And then, NADA!
I must say, I don't tyhink I WOULD travel anymore, if I could---which I can't. It all just sounds like such a trial....! I don't know how you do it, Judy....You Are Amazing! Trekking all over the Airport with Heavy Luggage....I hope you get rested up and I also hope you get a break soon, too.

themom said...

Oh how miserable. Travelling is not FUN anymore, it is a HASSLE. I loved travelling by train many eons ago - even that is tough anymore.

Boo said...

Oh my goodness, all that hard work and the only reward is more quality time with Mr Kenju. Haha...sorry, for some reason that was hilarious to me.

FLying really stinks sometimes.

Kristi said...

Ugh. I'm exhausted just reading about what happened. Flying is such a hassle these days. I hope that the trip gets rescheduled. Everyone needs a little alone time once and awhile, and you deserve yours.

JeanMac said...

You poor guys - traveling is such fun:)

mymomsblog.blogspot.com said...

ysypiOh Judy, what a terrible time you both had, especially you Judy lugging the luggage and the long walks.

Next time let Mr. Kenj's friends come visit him.

Have all the guys stay at a motel and you Judy, have the house all to yourself!!

Jamie Dawn said...

What an ordeal!!
We fly to CA tomorrow, and I hope we don't have any similar frustrations.