all morning the weather girl had called for massive thunderstorms. but as i drove to northern virginia the skies were empty of rain and the sun peaked through the clouds… with diagonal rays shooting out – the way it does at home and we’d say it looked like jesus was coming.
i sat down on the plane eager to get on with the early evening flight just as rain started to pelt the windows. i had been up since five o’clock the night before and quickly fell asleep. i awoke to the voice of someone from the cockpit and realized we were still on the ground. something about the thunderstorm was causing the delay but we were now in line to take off behind every other plane that had been grounded at dulles. he apologized that it was 7:30p. two hours after we were supposed to have taken off.
the distress didn’t set in until we were preparing to land in denver. i realized we’d be landing at the exact time my connecting flight to salt lake was supposed to be leaving. the flight attendant rattled off a myriad of connecting flights, splitting them into two groups… those who were expected run to their gates and those, me included, who were to check in with the united representative.
i was handed a new ticket for a flight the next night… a pink sheet was attached with hotel info, but as the woman explained… united wouldn’t cover my hotel since it wasn’t really their fault i missed my connecting flight. it’s not like they can control the weather. i was shuffled over to the united help desk with half of my flight…
after several phone calls with those anxiously awaiting my arrival in salt lake i was informed that the world wide web was reporting my flight was still in denver… and hadn’t taken off…. i walked over to the gate (my gate) saw a plane (my plane) sitting there waiting as luggage was being loaded on (my luggage?) it was now 30 minutes after it should have taken off.
i talked to a united woman, she said that was my plane but it was now full… some standby person was given my seat even though i was right there…. she said i was on a flight the next night at 6pm. it’s times like these where uncontrollable sobbing works wonders… well not fantastic wonders… but it gets you on an earlier flight at least on delta.
i rode with other disgruntled united passengers for 30 minutes to our hotel. during that ride i met a guy who frequently works in brazil and asked me all about the church. and the guy in front of me was actually from harrisonburg. i was tired and starving. the airport restaurants were already closed and the only thing opened at the hotel was the bar.
thanks to new security measures all i had in my two bed room… was the clothes i was wearing, a travel toothbrush, my computer and my cell phone… the 4:30am wake up call came much too soon.
back at the airport the man at the delta counter asked, “destination?”
me: salt lake city.
name? he said.
he surprised me with, “that’s a good salt lake name” he mentioned the o.c. tanner jewelry store and i informed him we were from the arizona tanners and we just had a construction company.
i waded through a never ending security line… and waited very impatiently for my boarding time…. it came and passed. apparently the stewardess was missing. she appeared and we boarded five minutes before take off. well everyone but me boarded. they shut the doors and two nasty delta women informed me i was not getting on the flight because i missed security. my last minute one way ticket was flagged for an extra random security check.
i flipped out and started literally sobbing. i was tired, hungry and not wanting to be stranded in denver. i told them they didn’t understand… this would be the second flight i was kicked off of and i did go through security. one of the women nastily said, “no, you don’t understand, these are security guidelines. we can’t ignore them.” i told them the bag i had was the same bag that i’ve had since the morning before and i’d already been through two security check points. but my pathetic remarks fell on deaf ears.
two TSA employees roughly frisked me and then hurried to get me on the flight… the plane was still sitting there, taunting me. the nasty delta women said, “no, she’s missed it.” they put me on a flight 3 hours later even though there were 2 more leaving in between.
after some quick investigation on becky’s part i walked across the terminal to southwest’s counter. they had a flight leaving in 20 minutes. they sold me a ticket. i boarded without incident. drank my coke and landed in salt lake an hour later.
i heart southwest.