So, I’m sitting in Houston, waiting on the inbound aircraft that will take my outbound flight merrily back to the west coast. We’re going to be about an hour late. I am absolutely, positively, not complaining.
Here’s why: I don’t have the whole story as yet–I only got a somewhat garbled version from my mother–but my sister seems to have had the worst travel day ever, in the history of travel.
That, of course, is an overstatement. That little Titanic thing was probably worse. But here’s what I currently understand about her story:
She was supposed to leave New Orleans for Newark at 10 am. Weather on the east coast, not to put to fine a point on it, blows, and has blown for some time now. So no east coast flights were going anywhere. But they kept saying, oh, it’s a little delayed, no worries. And apparently, they loaded and unloaded the plane a couple of times. Why? Dunno. Mom’s semi-hysteria wouldn’t say.
In any case, they definitely loaded the plane sometime in the 4 pm vicinity, and then decided sometime after that to unload it again, but told everyone that they could leave their stuff on the plane. While they were waiting, my sister ducked into the place next door to her gate to grab something to eat on the plane–and when she got back, the plane was gone.
No boarding announcements. No announcements of any kind. If you weren’t standing in the immediate gate area, you were still in New Orleans.
And, if you were my sister, everything except your wallet was now on its way to Newark.
And your airline isn’t operating any more flights to Newark today.
Here’s the good news: she must have thrown some kind of very effective fit, because the airline (1) managed to get some subset of her stuff off the plane (I have no idea; Mom’s semi-hysteria was chilling out a bit by this point, but still wasn’t terribly clear with the details); (2) refunded the entire purchase price of her ticket, which funds she was able to use to purchase another ticket on another airline, leaving very soon thereafter and arriving at JFK; and (3) promised to gather up the rest of her stuff off the plane and make sure that it appeared at JFK when she did.
Of course, the flight to JFK was promptly delayed for two hours.
Me, I’m just sitting here. Not complaining, not one little bit.