Sunday, May 23, 2010

Strange trip deuxième partie

Normally I wouldn't post all this nonsense about plane delays and volcanic ash.  But it just seems like this trip had more than it's fair share of quirks and kinks.  The outward bound leg was one delay and change after another, audio systems that didn't work, and yet we reached our destination late but in one piece and happy.  The return trip was almost a carbon copy of it.

Because we purchased our tickets separately this time (Bob wasn't sure he could go with me this trip until the last minute), our seats were not together, and even though I tried and tried to manipulate that circumstance on the Delta website, it could not be done.  Not only were we not seated together, but in 3 of the 4 legs Bob didn't even have a seat.  So each time we arrived at a departure gate we had that detail to take care of.  

We arrived at the airport in Salt Lake City, turned in the rental car and checked in - no problem there.  Had breakfast at Sbarro - who knew??  When the gate agent arrived as our gate we got our seats.  We have become pretty accustomed to sitting in the tail of the plane, and this time was no different.  I'm actually starting to prefer it back there - last to board, closer to the lavs......  We departed on time.  I dug out my itinerary and had no sooner remarked about the comfortable time we had between flights when "this is your captain speaking" announced that Atlanta was closed and that we would have to circle for a couple of hours, or until we ran out of gas in which case we would refuel in Savanna.  We had visions of spending the night in Atlanta as we watched the little trip map on the monitor trace a pattern round and round and round Columbus, GA.  

Just in the nick of time the skies opened and we landed in Atlanta.  At 4:35 PM.  Our flight to Frankfurt was scheduled to depart at 4:40 PM.  Yikes.  I quick look at the terminal monitor showed that it too had been delayed to 4:50.  We moved as fast as the trains would go from terminal A to terminal E (could they get any further away??) and in true "Home Alone" fashion got there as the doors were closing.  Now remember Bob didn't have a seat.  The agents at the gate were on top of that and as soon as they had our names they not only had a seat for Bob, but a seat with me, and this time it wasn't in the boot.  And just like the Frankfurt to Atlanta flight, there were scads of empty seats and we spread out on our row and had a better than usual flight.  No more severe storm delays, no volcanic ash polluting the Atlantic  air routes.  Smooth sailing.

And then it occurred to us that if we had to scurry like mice to make the flight that it was just possible, no, it was probable that our luggage didn't make it.  Sure 'nuf.  No bags in Frankfurt.  They were located in Atlanta and would come the next day on the same flight number.  I stayed home from church anticipating a phone call or delivery, but there was nothing until about 6:00 PM.  

Now all is safely gathered in.  I'm not feeling too jet lagged (although I just had a great nap and several other snoozes during the day).  Back to seminary tomorrow morning.

The other tale of woe is getting Bob's van out of the body shop.  We left it there during the trip to get a little fender bender repaired and arrived just as the gates slid shut on Saturday.  It is a German holiday tomorrow (Day of Pentecost) so we might not be able to get the van until Tuesday.  With his early morning practices and seminary that is a problem.  Not impossible, but cumbersome and a bit inconvenient.  Not nearly as problematic as missed flights, volcanic ash, and delayed baggage.


Millers! said...

What a German Holiday.. I DONT BELIEVE THAT TO BE TRUE... LOL! Well that sounded very exciting.. I sure wish we were going to germany.. but unfortunately El Paso Doug will be home longer before deploying..

Kari said...

I love exciting flights! That would be cool to have all that room on a trans-atlantic flight! Glad you made it safely!

The Grows said...

Wow, I am impressed by all of your bad luck. It is not every person that could have such random problems come up on flights both ways. I am glad you are finally home and with all of your stuff...well except the van.

Alisa and Jared said...

Your travels are ALWAYS interesting!! Too bad American trains can't compare to European trains...we have a lot to learn! Congrats on the new grandbaby!