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Thursday, February 13, 2020

The Tale Of A Journey

Time had been running up to my trip south, for picking up our new-to-us passenger van. So on February 11 I felt the typical unrest of an upcoming journey. Bea had then driven me to the bus stop in Whiting where we had been waiting in our van for the little bus getting me to Bangor, ME. The bus was on time and another passenger, a woman, was boarding the bus ahead of me. As soon has we got moving that woman starting chatting loudly with the driver. But this chatterbox got a lot worse once another woman had joined the bus some 20 miles farther down the road. Over the course of being together in this bus, I learned her entire life story, from her being pregnant to going to prison twice to now being in a rehab program. And, of course, the other woman joined in with stories of her own. It was nerveracking to say the least. 

Finally the chatter died out when the first woman left us in Ellsworth. From there it was another hour of riding in this rattletrap of a bus to Bangor from where I boarded a regular motor coach to Portland, ME.

Since my ticket was for an early morning flight, I had booked a stay at the Comfort Inn.

At 3:20am the alarm clock rang and I was tumbling out of bed.
An hour later the hotel shuttle dropped me off at the airport.

Now have you ever gone through a revolving glass door?  I might have gotten through without an incident, had I just been wide awake. But I tried to walk through the glass when I thought the opening was in front of me. I hit my head so hard against the glass that i lost both my suitcase and briefcase out of my hands. Luckily, a door guard was present and stopped the movement of the door. Otherwise, I might have been swept off my feet completely.
With a growing swelling on my forehead I was standing in front of the ticket counter a few minutes later. And that was when my next bad surprise should would come crushing down on me.
It appeared that I hadn't paid attention to the little "p" behind the departure time. Yes, the ticket agent informed me that my flight was a night flight. Realizing my most stupid mistake I slumped over her counter. In fact, I must have touched some thing in this ticket agent's heart as she now tried to find another flight for me. But it appeared all was booked to the brim. Meanwhile I was bemoaning my stupidity and looking more and more desperate. Suddenly her face was lighting up. "We normally don't do this", she said and then she was gone for a few minutes. When she came back she had the greatest smile on her face and started working her keyboard. She had informed her superior that my upcoming night flight would be in jeopardy because of a severe storm front moving in over Dallas that night. That made it possible for her to get me on a stand-by flight with departure at 7:25am.
I was told to go to gate and wait to be called up.
When the gate area was filling and the gate agent announced a full flight seeking volunteers to check in carry-ons complementary, my hope was waning. Towards the end I got to my feet and approached the ticket agent asking what chance there was to get on his flight. he looked at the ticket, and told me to wait another 20 minutes, but also said I'd be OK.
15 minutes later he came to my seat in the waiting area handing me my boarding card.

I felt a huge rock rolling of my heart!! The gate agent had been working at the ticket counter only 2 hours earlier and was fully informed about my case!!
These guys at American Airlines were just fantastic.

I reached Houston at 1:10pm that day. A cab took me down to the car dealer ship on Richmond Ave where I could finally inspect the van I had bought. I had ordered the van with a complete tow package, but discovered soon that they had only mounted the hitch, but no brake controller and no electric connector in the back. This was apparently due to misunderstandings and missing knowledge.
They issued me a partly refund, and today I went to an RV place and got them to complete the work. It resulted in a 5hr. wait during which I emptied 3 cups of coffee and a pop can and wandering a few hours across their sales lot inspecting and admiring hundreds of motor homes and other RVs. The company's name is PPL Motor Homes and they have 3 Texas locations. All they do is consigning RVs for selling. They proved to be very competent but also somewhat pricey. LOL. But if you are looking for a deal, it's the place to go. They will run you around the lot in their golf carts and your head will be spinning.

Have a great time.


2 comments:

  1. Glad you finally made your destination and got things sorted out with your new van.Hope your headache is gone soon.

    ReplyDelete
  2. What a journey! Not much worse than showing up for the wrong time. I'm surprised that the time of the flight wasn't in a 24 hour format? There would then have been no confusion at all. Oh well, you made it, that's all that matters.

    ReplyDelete

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