Saturday, January 03, 2009

Travelling Woes

Hello Friends:
What an outpouring of warm comments I have received regarding my mother… my loss.
Thank you so much.
I have had unbelievable problems in returning home [“home” being Saskatchewan].
If any of you have been keeping score here, I just recently RETURNED from Saskatchewan and a visit to my hospitalized mother on the 27th of December.
When she passed away on New Year’s Eve [technically New Year’s Day] I immediately secured a flight home for that same day. Was scheduled to leave at 6 p.m.
I did NOT leave.
I got on board the flight and as we were waiting at the gate we all noticed that it was about 150 degrees HOT on the plane. Maintenance staff arrived and tried to fix the problem but could not do so. We were told to go back into the terminal, which we did, and then an hour or two later an announcement told us the flight was utterly cancelled.
A lineup, [yet another herd of cattle] ensued, and people frantically tried to re-book their flights.
I was toward the back of this moo-ing lineup. By the time I ever got to the ticket-issuing personnel, my udders were sore!
I was re-booked on a flight for today, the 3rd. This is the earliest I could get out of Dodge since those cattle ahead of me got the better flights.
Now today, I awoke at around 3:30 a.m., got my cab, was at the airport by 5 a.m., and boarded at about 6 a.m.
Flight to Toronto was fine and on schedule.
During the flight I was walking to the washroom when a flight attendant mentioned to me that the toilets were not flushing.
“Pardon me,” I said.
“The toilets do not flush,” she repeated.
I went in anyways.
Was she ever correct! The scene was rather horrid.
A few minutes late the pilot announces that we are landing in Winnipeg to have the toilets fixed. [Murphy’s Law].
We land.
Maintenance crew arrives and fixes the toilet problem.
Captain then announces that a plane is stuck on the snowy runway and we cannot depart for several minutes.
Those several minutes stretch on into approximately five hours.
Right now my butt is so sore I may need surgery!
I am still on this flight right now as I type. We are finally landing in Saskatoon, and local time is about 3:40 p.m. Original arrival time was 10:45 a.m.
I am tired.
The only consolation is that when we finally did take off they announced that they would be serving free booze.
Right now I am high on Heineken!

Thank you once again for all of your sincere and thoughtful wishes.
P.S. I am not kidding when I advise you to NOT fly with Air Canada in the winter-time unless you want to experience lengthy delays and lost baggage [and sore udders].
-- Cip



Beth said...

Chug back another of those green bottles. You deserve it.
May you have a successful return trip.
(What are the odds of yet another flight from hell?)

Danielle said...

You'd think that considering the reason why you are traveling they could have gotten you on an earlier flight (or at least one that had working restrooms!). Sorry to hear it's been lousy getting where you need to go. I hope you had a good book with you.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Beth – just keep yourself liquified with something strong. Hope the rest of the trip isn't as painful. (And yes, I always try and fly WestJet, cuz Air Canada SUCKS!)

Melwyk said...

Oh my god. Good luck with your flight back. I'm with Patricia -- I always fly WestJet.

Ti said...

Your post was featured on Book Trib and I happened to stumble upon it. What a nightmare! I'm sorry you have to go through this. I hope you get home soon.

Anonymous said...

What a literal pain in the ass! Holy cow Cip, as if you needed anything to make things worse. The beer was a nice gesture but frequent flier miles or a partial ticket refund would have been even nicer.

Jenifer@SkookumsLog said...

Travelling is like that more often than not lately. Clearly consumer protection in regard to air travel is not a priority of our governments. Best to give the airlines tax dollars whenever they crave them and allow them to treat their customers like criminals. At least you got free booze. Sorry to hear about your Mum. My Mother's family on her Father's side came from Saskatchewan.

Jeane said...

What an awful travel experience. I hope you're all recovered now. I just started going thru my Reader after being away for holidays and am so sorry to hear of your loss. My condolences.