Disclaimer: "I am not mad (any longer) at my husband for his mistake (more on that later). It is not his fault (though I may beg to differ) that the weather was bad. I do not expect any jewelry (though I would like it) for Christmas to make up for his horrible/terrible/expensive mistake." - Jamie Lentnzer
Thursday, December 9, 2010.
1:48 p.m I just got back to the office after getting my hair done and I went to print out my boarding pass. Wait, let me back up to get you up to speed. I was flying out to San Diego to meet my husband for his Christmas Holiday Party Friday night. I was "supposed"(yes that is me doing air quotes and I am rolling my eyes if you must know) to fly out at 10:30 a.m Friday morning. His company is based there, and no we are not separated he works out of the house here in Foster City (so many people looked perplexed when I said San Diego & Company party in the same sentence). Any hoo - he flew in earlier in the week for some sales meetings and I was flying in Friday morning....so I thought.
After close inspection....no not really when I tried to print my boarding pass it said I had to wait 24 hours before my flight and I could not print it yet. I took a double take at my itinerary and saw I was flying out at 10:30 p.m.........yes P.M!! I calmly picked up the phone and called my husband - ya right I was practically hysterical when I told him, he booked the flight for me.
2:15 p.m. Darin called me back with the news and it was all bad news. To fly on United the next day I would have to pay $1,100.00, or to change to Virgin American and fly tonight it would cost about $300.00. Ya, I took the latter choice, only problem was that I had not packed and I had to make sure my kids (and dogs) had a place to sleep. My fabulous wonderful totally amazing Mom agreed to take the kids & dogs an extra night.
5:04 p.m. After taking my son to soccer practice (and picking him up) I frantically packed my bag with what I thought was appropriate for a weekend away in San Diego. I packed warm clothes, spring clothes and summer clothes. I packed my kids clothes and my dogs stuff. I rushed to my parents home and then I was off to the airport.
8:50 p.m. After slamming a beer at the airport bar I got ready to board my plane.....ya not so fast there sister. Our flight was late. We boarded late left the airport at 9:30 p.m. We then proceeded to circle San Diego for a long, long time.
Lucky for me I had two traveling companions on either side to keep me company. On my right was a woman who just wanted to be left alone, and how I knew that was the fact that she wore a sleep mask and pretty much gave anyone who woke her a look of death. To my left was a Dude (yes I said Dude) who had a tail that was 3 feet long, a hat that was sideways with stickers, tattoo sleeves on both arms and had stolen Tina Fey's glasses from her. As soon as he sat down he put his ipod on and went to sleep. He then continued to breathe on me the entire flight. He smelled like Chinese food, bad breath and gas. I do not like to be breathed on.
10:25 p.m An announcement over the loud speaker from our lead steward told us we had been circling San Diego and could not land due to severe weather. This was code for the fog was way too thick to land. So we circled one more time and tried to land. I was still being breathed on.
10:52 p.m. Sadly we were unable to land in San Diego so we were going to Los Angeles to either get more fuel or get on buses and drive to San Diego. So go ahead and guess which happened? We got to sit on the plane until about 11:30 p.m. The Steward claimed we would only have to wait 30 or at the most 40 minutes for buses to pick our asses up and distribute them in San Diego. Piece of Cake, right? Ya wrong.
The Dude woke up next to me, or actually his friend decided to shake him till he woke up and yell in his face, "Dude (hence the nickname I coined) we are not in Kansas....we are in LAX!" His response was peppered with explicatives that rhymed with Duck and he proceeded to yell them over and over as we sat on the plane. Oh, and he continued to breathe his horrid breath on me as he yelled them out.
The Bathroom Incident Friday, December 10, 2010 12:07 a.m
After finally being let off the plane we all rushed to the nearest bathrooms, which seemed logical since we were all eventually being put on buses that would drive over two hours to get us back to where we were supposed to land. It was not only our airlines that was unable to land in San Diego, but countless other airlines that were stranded at LAX.
After asking numerous rude airport personal where the nearest bathroom was I found a woman's bathroom. I stood in a very long line and waited. Soon after getting in line a rather interesting older woman got in line behind me and she talked the entire time we were in line. She explained how she had taken a bus before and it was not that bad, she talked about where she came from (Hawaii) and what airline she flew out on. After each announcement she said ya,ya. She poked me over and over and asked if I knew if there were more toilets (the answer was no). She spoke like the Rain Man.
The line was long and we were in line for a long time. As I stood there I continued to be bombarded with questions from Rain Woman. She kept poking me and pointing to the bathroom section with the sinks and asking if I thought there were toilets there. I kept saying no. I almost yelled "I DON'T WORK HERE!", but I was too tired. By the fourth poke I almost suggested she go pee in the sinks, but I thought better of it.
As I got closer to the toilets (Did I mention the line was long?) a young 8 year old blond girl with dark glasses (stole from my neighbor on the plane I assumed) pushed and shoved her way to the front of the line. When she arrived at the front of the line she just stared at the stalls. A woman asked her if she was looking for someone, she did not answer. The woman then asked her what she wanted - again no answer. Finally she asked if the little girl could wait, then the fun started. From way back in the end of the line we heard at about 100 decibels, "NO SHE CAN'T WAIT!!!". The poor woman looked around and asked the girl what she needed, still no answer. Then we heard it again, "NO SHE CAN'T WAIT!". She reluctantly let this little girl cut in line. Small girl did not even say thank you.
At last I finally got to a stall and just as I closed the door I heard this from somewhere in the back of the line, "HEY DO YOU KNOW WE ARE 20 DEEP IN LINE AND WE NEED TO GO TO THE BATHROOM!" Um, ya WTF? I had, had it. I quickly respondedyelled with my own tirade, "Ya We are Having a Frickin' Party in Here! WE are peeing as fast as we can thank you very much!"
After I left my stall, Rain Woman gave me a strange look and then she asked me if I was okay. I told her yes and then she proceed to say since I was YELLING at myself she was worried. Um, okay.
Other Tidbits & Fun Facts While Waiting in Airport
The Virgin Airlines staff was kind enough to pass out water to us. When the gentleman reached me two older short women proceed to take the rest of the waters and fill up their pockets with water.....I got no water.
A older stocky gentlemen in a trench coat hacked and coughed the entire time we waited for our flight. Not only did he cough and not cover his mouth he walked around coughing on everyone.
One of the stewardesses had a very small (under 5 pound) puppy that she carried around, changed it's clothes, coddled it and gave it water.....bottled water, that I did not get. She also did two costume changes at the airport. Her co-worker not to be one upped also changed - into a super short royal blue dress, tights, thing high boots and put on some fantastic bright red lipstick. Apparently she was dressing up for our long drive in the middle of the night to San Diego.
The Ride on the Bus, December 10, 2010. 1:30 a.m - 3:30 a.m.
The Bus was crowded, but we all got seats and though Virgin promised that we would be on a bus in 30 minutes, what they really meant was like an hour and a half. The drive to San Diego was two hours and it was not nearly as entertaining as my time in the bathroom line, but then again I was dozing in and out of conciseness, but this I remember:
- Driver texted most of the way to San Diego
- Driver checked directions about 7 times while driving
- For two straight hours a girl smacked and cracked her gum
- The fog was so thick our driver had to press on the breaks numerous times
- Driver had no idea where she was going and got stuck in the wrong terminal
- A bus driver wearing a Santa hat can not be trusted, unless it is actually Sant
I finally got to bed at oh um 4:30 a.m. in the morning on December 10th. To say I was not looking my best on Friday would be an understatement. And even though the flight left me with an entertaining story I did have a good weekend. And, when I got to the airport on Sunday to fly home - I was upgraded to first class. Score!