I'm back, for the second time, in the Red Carpet Club at O'hare.
I should have been here last night, but I wasn't
I had a flight last night from Chicago to Columbus, OH for a trial that I'm working on there. Right around the time I was getting ready to leave the house, I got a United update that said "your flight has been cancelled". To tell the truth, I wasn't extremely upset as I had had a visit to the doctor a little earlier in the day and he had taken care of something that left me feeling like I just didn't want to move. I would have moved, I just didn't really want to. So, I got the cancellation alert, sighed deeply and then dialed the 800 United number. "We're very sorry" he said and then I was told that the next flight to Columbus was at 3pm the following day. Ok - thats when I started to have a little bit of a problem..... You cancel my flight and then tell me the next flight isn't until like 16 hours later....
So - he found a flight to Cleveland at 6 a.m. that would then get me to a connecting flight to Columbus which would arrive in at like 10 a.m.
I went to sleep at 9:30 p.m. with my alarm set for 3:20 a.m. so I could get up and get to the airport for my 6 a.m. flight. All was going well.
Zip - I get ready and get to the airport and board my flight for 6a.m. We're clicking along, we push back from the gate, we roll out, announcements are made.
Really? Where - I don't see it here!....
Sorry - we won't be able to take off on-time and, in fact, because we have a plane the size of a peanut, we've already ran out of gas so we need you all to get out and push us back to the gate so they can put more fuel on. Well, not quite, but just about....
Oh - can I insert this. This is a little lesson for all of you who fly frequently or spordically.... When they put you on a plane and shut the door, smells travel.... You have smelly lotion, everyone around you smells it. You have a kid with a dirty diaper, we all know it. You buy an egg mcmuffin and decide to devour it with the vents blowing - everyone who is not you wants to horf - especially at 6 a.m. ITS DISGUSTING!!!!!! Same thing with tuna or egg salad sandwiches, chalupas, gorditas - anything hot or especially odiferous -- DON'T EAT IT ON A PLANE UNLESS WE ALL HAVE IT! Its called, being considerate. Pay it forward people...On with the story.
We come back to the gate to put on fuel and as soon as we stop a horde of people push up to the front to clamor and paw at the poor attendant who tells us that our best bet, if we have connecting flights, is to get on the phone with United and see what our options are. Already thought of that. As she was speaking I was on the phone.
Amazing, the previous night, Juan couldn't find anything direct but a 3 p.m. to Columbus. Now as I sat on the a plane to Cleveland, Gloria, on the phone, has found an 11 a.m. She tells me to "quietly" go up and try to get off the plane. I tell her we missed the "quiet" boat as there was a line of people demanding the same thing.
The gate agent is finally convinced by the captain to let people off who can get a direct flight. She concedes and we get off with our little luggage stubs in hand - well, I'm actually the only one whose carry on was too big and had to be put under the plane.
I stand where I'm told to on the jet bridge and she proceeds with her business and, I believe forgets about me. The next thing I know she's moving the jet bridge with me on it and then she looks at me shocked and says I have to go up by the door. I say that I can't because I don't have my bag and she looks at me like she has no clue what I'm talking about until I motion to my bag tag in her hand. She says that she'll see if she can get it but the plane has to leave and I have to move up to the door.
So, this is what I'm having a hard time understanding. If I get to the airport 2 minutes after the "check in deadline" (which is 30 minutes before BOARDING time starts) they will refuse to check me in if I have a checked bag because the bag may not make it to the plane and they can't put me on a different plane than my bag. However, I have found many other situations in which, it is convenient to them, to put my bag on a plane to Bermuda and me on a plane to Boise. So, who gets to make the ultimate decision of "bag safety"?
Again, I digress.
The wonderful gate agent finally did get my bag and I happily trotted off to the Red Carpet Club again to wait for my, now, 11 a.m. direct flight to Columbus. I get to the the Club and they can't print my boarding pass as I'm not technically on the 11 a.m. flight because she didn't bother to actually take me off the 6 a.m. Cleveland flight.
I don't even know where I am at this point.
Long and short - but we've already gone through the long as it really wouldn't have been as fun and action packed as the short - I finally got my boarding pass for Cleveland and will sit here and wait and not think about the 3 extra hours of sleep I could have gotten if Juan had done his job correctly yesterday and found the 11 a.m. flight to Columbus.
Its only Tuesday - I think I deserve for it to be Thursday at least....