Tuesday, November 20, 2007

When You're Making Other Plans . . .

Fog, that's what happens.

So we are still here -- waiting to go there -- along with literally millions of other people.

Now we are scheduled to go tomorrow afternoon from another airport about 2 hours from here.

That's the downside. The upside is that it's a non-stop to DFW, so provided the plane flies we will not be bogged down in a hub someplace -- or if we are it will be because we've been diverted and that will be a whole new downside we aren't even contemplating at this point.

My theory about airline travel (and any other sort for that matter) is that it's a whole different sort of time entirely. I suppose it's like "dreamtime" -- though not meaning the same thing. It's a sort of "time" which you step into when you leave wherever you're leaving from, and until you get off at the other end, you're in "travel time" and "real normal time" as we know it ceases to exist.

What is "travel time?" Time when you have no control, you can't plan, you are herded about like a sheep (Eamon, where are you?). And all you can do is take along a good book and go with the flow.

Generally I have no problem with this. Today, for example, it didn't bother me a bit to be told we couldn't go. Any idiot could see we couldn't go.

When I get annoyed is when it's clearly a matter of choice for the airline to muck up peoples' lives. Ordinarily they don't.

But last year they did when they knew perfectly well that a three hour late arriving flight the night before was going to mean that the crew couldn't fly at the very early scheduled time in the morning (there's a rule that says they have to have 8 hours between these flights to sleep). So everyone who had a connection missed it.

The airline people knew this the night before. But they didn't bother to tell anyone not to come at the regular time. They also didn't bother to start booking people on new flights until we'd reached Denver where we sat for 16 hours as flight after flight was already "full."

There were any number of ways they could have made things go more smoothly. They didn't bother. And they didn't even seem to care. Fog doesn't bother me. Disservice to customers does. I don't fly that airline as often as I used to. And it's never my first choice. I'm sure they don't care, but I'm sorry they don't.

But I'm not flying that airline tomorrow -- and it's still going to be a good Thanksgiving.

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