Dublin Saab

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Tuesday, March 29, 2005


The trip was an overall success as we were able to accomplish all that we need in preparation for the wedding, including obtaining the all important marriage certificate. However, getting there and back was a bit of a challenge.

First Leg: Columbus to Boston.
We arrive at CMH at 4pm for a 5:25pm flight, plenty of time for little Port Columbus International Airport. We check in and get through security fine. At 5:10 I notice there’s no plane at our gate. 5:25 and still no plane. At 5:30 they announce the plane is delayed arriving (Oh?) and we should be on our way at 5:55. That prediction proves correct and foreboding.

Second Leg: Boston to London
We land at BOS at 7:47, giving us 43 minutes to make our connecting flight. I’d like to tell you that we made it with so much time to spare we stopped for a cup of tea but Boston Logan’s no place for fairy tales. Our luggage is being directly transferred but we have to go to the British Airways ticket counter to get our boarding passes and then get security screened a second time. However by the time we get to the gate, transfer (by bus) to the correct terminal and find the BA counter it’s 8:05, leaving us 25 minutes till our plane leaves. Anyone familiar with BA’s time rules knows that is 35 minutes too late. Fuck. BA wants to put us on tomorrow nights flight. Double fuck. After explain to them I have to have a stamp on my visa that says the 18th or the Registrar’s office won’t give us the certificate and the entire point of the trip is moot they get us on the early morning flight but want us to pay for the ticket since it’s not their fault we missed the flight. Fuckers. We now go back to Delta and after 2 hours and only one altercation where I lit into the Delta rep have a confirmed seat on BA238 at 8:15am, hotel accommodations and a voucher for breakfast. So I can no say I have been in Boston for St. Paddy’s day. The next day we are in line at the BA ticket counter at 5:50am and everything goes smoothly. A nice legible stamp on my visa and welcome to England Mr. Dinger.

In a side note this was to be my first 747 flight but for the 3rd time “something” happened. The morning BA238 was a 777, foiled again.

Third Leg: London to New York, JFK
Get to LHR with plenty of time to spare. Get to the ticket counter and what normally takes 30 seconds is dragging on and on. After about 10 minutes and 4 phone calls by the BA rep I ask what’s up. She then proceeds to sheepishly tell us that since we missed the over night flight that BA had cancelled our return tickets and she was franticly trying to find us room on the plane. Helen gets livid and finishes with, “I guess since we flew on a BA flight a few hours later they assumed we where moving to England?” The rep just gives a look and goes back to searching. After about 25 minutes we are back on the flight but 9 rows apart. Helen’s between several skinny babbling teenagers while I get penned in between several large older ladies who never said a word. Plane leaves on time and arrives at JFK 5 minutes early.

In a side note this was my first flight in a 747. A bit anti climatic but I did get to “check” that box while the 747 is still king of the skies.

Fourth Leg: JFK to Columbus (eventually)
We get off the BA 747, go through immigration, get our bags and go through Customs without a hitch. Get to the correct terminal for Delta 6373, get to the ticket counter and get our boarding passes. Our boarding passes say “Seat Request”. We ask and the Delta rep tells us that we’ll get a seat number at the gate. Right. The rep at the gate tells us with a bit of disinterest that we have been “bumped”. Mother Fuckers. He tells us our options are to wait and see if someone with a seat no shows. We wait. No luck. The two of us and a young mother with a 6 month old are left off the flight. However! Our luggage was not bumped and is enroot to Columbus. This is the same for the mother. The guy at the ticket counter is telling her she has to wait until 8pm tomorrow for the next flight. She starts by explaining that almost all of her baby stuff is on flight, he interrupts with “it’s tomorrows flight or nothing” and she counters with , “What the fuck am I supposed to do with a kid, 2 diapers and ½ a bottle for 24 hours!?” She then starts to really dig into the guy. We get to a Delta rep a few doors down and start by telling him he had better be more imaginative than tomorrow’s 8pm flight to CMH. He offers a flight to Cinncy connecting to CMH. We are okay with that. He then tells us that is leaves in 20 minutes.

“It leaves when?”
“In 20 minutes.”
“Oh, and from what terminal?”
“Terminal 2”
“Nice, and we are currently in terminal?”
“Yes. So you are offering a flight that leaves now from a different terminal. I tell you what, you can print those boarding passes and deal with me after I ran and missed the plane because I will come back here looking for you, Jawuan, or you can keep looking.”

After a few minutes we have a 6:55 to CVG (cinncy) connecting to CMH from the terminal we are currently in and as it’s currently 5:45 we accept. The flight is to arrive in CVG at 8:10 where we are to sit until 11:20 for the flight to CMH. I make a few calls and have my folks enroot to pick us up in CVG and drive us to CMH to get our luggage and the car. Things seem set and in motion.

Meanwhile earlier in the day someone snuck a gun past the security in CVG and the airport was closed for 3 hours.

So thanks to that and lousy weather the 6:55 to CVG doesn’t take off until 8:25. Yay! Now about the flight, I’d have to say the crew did an excellent job of dealing with the passengers and the constant turbulence. It was not a smooth flight. I hate flying. I hate turbulence. At one point the captain put it to the passengers for a vote. We could fly around to get out of the turbulence adding 45 minutes to the flight or we could push through. The vote was 36-2. We pushed on through and landed on time, that is on time relative to our late departure. As we began our dissent the cabin crew person took the purses and other things and locked them up to ensure nothing would be flying around for what the captain had assured us would be a "rough going" for the dissent. However, it turned out to be the smoothest part of the flight. Thank God. Met the folks and they drove us up to the Columbus airport. It was 12:30am, 20 minutes after our flight from CVG was to have been there. I looked at the screen. The flight still hadn’t left CVG yet so we still won that race. Got our luggage, the car and home at 1:15am.

By the time my head hit the pillow it was 2am which meant I have been up for 48 hours. But that is another story.


At March 29, 2005 8:38 PM, Blogger The Evil Jeremy. said...

If BA didn't just about give away tickets every year at off-peak, I would avoid them at any cost. They're yet another glorious side effect of the UK's largely abandoned experiment with socialism: they used to be the only game in town, and their status as a former corrupt, state-owned monopoly still informs their service. They suck.


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