Friday, May 23, 2008

The rest of the story.......

I was a bit road weary after our California adventures over the last 2 weeks so I have not been as quick to jump back on here. Lyn has started the story about our return flight home and since I know she is completely aggravated with the whole sordid tale......she is leaving it up to me to fill in the blanks.

Ok.....we arrived at SFO in plenty of time to catch our flight. However, once standing in line my eyes meandered to the Northwest Departures board where I found that our flight (scheduled to leave in 2 hours) was already marked "Delayed". Not so good news for us because we had a connecting flight to catch in Minneapolis. Yes.....Minneapolis, Minnesota. I will pause to say that the only thing good to come from the state of Minnesota is blizzard snow storms and Mary Richards (for you youngsters that would be location characterized in the Mary Tyler Moore Show). So yeah......Minnesota. I have no reason on this earth to ever go there but for some reason I was meant to spend the night there Wednesday evening.

So I digress. Our flight was delayed by 67 minutes once we boarded the plane. At that point we had a chance to still make our connecting flight at 7 pm CST. Then......we sat on the plane for another 40 minutes and that pretty well secured the fact that we were not making our connection. By the time we pulled into the Minneapolis airport (just to find that there were no Northwest runway guys available to assist us to the gate) it was 7:15 CST.

Since there were so many people who were waylayed by the delays, Northwest had new itineraries, food vouchers, shuttle vouchers and hotel vouchers waiting for us as we got off the plane. Sounds good right? Remember.....we were in freakin Minnesota at 8pm in the evening. We might as well had been dropped off on an island.

We decided to get our flight arrangements in order before we left the airport so we could waste as little as time as possible the next day. This is when we spent an hour with Northwest ticketing agent - Jose. I am not sure it was his very first day with NWA but he was definitely a rookie in dealing with our issue. It was at this point where I knew that with "NWA Jose" assisting us we would likely not see our luggage when we arrived back home in Dayton. After an hour, we finally got our itinerary for our boarding passes on American Airlines the next day. This is when we found out we would be flying from Minneapolis to Chicago and then to Dayton. But you know........whatever.....I was good because we were on a competent airline out of the "Land of 10,000 Lakes". It didn't matter to me that I would have to be awakened at 4 am to make a 4:45 shuttle from the Days Inn. Yeah.....Days Inn. With no additional clothes with us except what we had on our backs, it was a no brainer that I was going to sleep in my clothes anyway. My only fear is we would encounter snow the next morning that could delay our 6am flight out of there. You may laugh at that but we are talking about freakin Minnesota here people! It snows 300 days a year up there.

Next morning, our friends took an earlier shuttle to the airport since they weren't sleeping much in our luxury accommodations. Lyn and I caught the 4:45 "Special" and was promptly delivered to the airport at 5am on the nose. After a brief moment of panic by me while waiting in the security checkpoint - I thought I didn't have my wallet with me - we breezed through the checkpoint and managed to get a VERY ON-TIME flight with American Airlines and out of the barren snowland of Minnesota.

Our next flight was just as prompt and once we landed in Dayton, we only had one last obstacle to overcome - the arrival of our luggage. God knows it could be anywhere but after this extended journey home we REALLY wanted it with us. No luck. The only four bags sitting on the luggage carousel were someone elses and not ours. We checked with American and they didn't have them. We told them that "NWA Jose" said he was routing them to AA (the other AA is what all four of us need now after this trip) so we were sure they would have them. Wow....we were naive and tired at this point. We checked with Northwest who checked one of our bag tags and said that our bags were going through Detroit and should be there today. They will be sent to us. Aha.....ok. Little did we know that the only bag still in route from Detroit was Lyn's. Our other three bags were in Dayton since 6am that day and neither airline had them in their immediate possession.

Three of our bags arrived last night. Lyn's is being hand delivered by some poor soul who doesn't know what the hell he is in for when he knocks on Lyn's door this evening. Needlesstosay that no matter how badly I need to reach "here to there" in the future, it will not be on NWA. We never received an explanation on why the flight was delayed and after working with "NWA Jose" I have no faith in the competence of their employees.

Either way........all of us are home safely and we all enjoyed our trip immensely. I received all the wine I shipped from Napa today so I will be as happy as a drunken clam shortly.


CJ said...

Sorry Rita that your nice vacation had to end with that mess. Sounds pretty hectic. Glad to hear the wine arrived safely though!

BTW - loved the MTM video on the sidebar. That really brought me back. What a groovy pants suit!

Sue said...

Glad you are home safe and sound, with wine in hand.

Rita said...

Ahhh may be interested in knowing that a new hotel bar is opening in the St. Francis - it is called The Clock. Should probably be open when you arrive in June......

Sue said...

Excellent! But you mean August...the 14th to be exact...on the express from BOS to SFO...and hopefully we will not experience the same shenanigans with our airline! Luckily, we have a direct flight ~ anyway, am looking forward to checking out the new bar ~ thank you for the info :-)

On another note...we dined at Finz on Pickering Wharf in Salem last Saturday...HANDS DOWN the best Raspberry Martini in New England, not to mention an excellent seared tuna steak, mussels and oysters and an attentive, pleasant server :-)

Gearing up for our 5-mile benefit walk on Sunday ~ thank you again for your support! And Pride is right around the corner ~
June 14th!