Friday, February 26, 2010

Travel Woes

Wednesday I left the condo in Salt Lake City about 12:45 PM for my 3:25 PM to Detroit. Daughter-in-law Abby drove me to the airport for my departure with granddaughter Jenny making the trip to. With a fond farewell I was off to security and baggage check in to make my way to the gate. After nearly losing my pants after taking off my belt for security and making sure to gather all the stuff out of my pockets, I made it to the gate to find a delay until 4:45 PM departure.

After cooling my heels until 4:45 PM I was informed that the flight had to be cancelled because the crew time was beyond what was allowed by FAA regulations. Next flight at 7:20 PM meaning I would arrive in Detroit at 12:51 AM on Thursday and obviously miss my connection for a flight to Ithaca.

I did get the evening flight and arrived in Detroit about 1:00 AM. No bags and dead tired. More abuse followed. It took an hour standing in line at the Delta baggage office to get a voucher and allocation of a room at the Quality Inn. So at 2:00 AM I was off to the Quality Inn with a bunch of my fellow travelers. Upon arrival at the Quality in we were greeted by one night clerk to check in about 50 people. Needless to say it was another marathon of standing in line with the result of getting into bed at 3:00 AM. I could not arrange an Ithaca flight until very late in the day so I booked a 7:20 AM flight to Syracuse. Therefore I was up at 5:15 AM to grab the shuttle to the airport to get through security for the early flight. Well, guess what? The plane for this flight was announced to have a maintenance problem and would have an undetermined departure time. At this point, I was desperate to get somewhere into upstate New York and drive the rest of the way. Fortunately I was able to book a Rochester flight leaving about 8:20 AM. The Rochester flight did fly. Out of Rochester I was able to rent a car for a one way trip to Ithaca.

The other clinker in this travel plan became finding out the location of my skis and bag that I had checked through to Syracuse. The Delta baggage agent said that I could not have it arranged to be delivered to my home. So, off to Syracuse with the rental car to chase down my gear. By some strange miracle when I arrived at baggage claim in Syracuse my gear was there. Now off to home in Cortland and on to Ithaca. I arrived home about 1:30 PM. What a relief!! Nancy had been on pins and needles knowing that there was a serious snow storm expected for our area. After hugs, kisses and a brief rest we were off to Ithaca to get my car at the airport and return the rental car.

Lo and behold this onerous adventure still was not over. After returning the rental car I grabbed my shovel and we were off to clear my car of about two feet of snow. We had to shovel away the snow they plowed into the back. About 18 inches of snow was on top of the car too. Along with this, the surface underfoot was as slippery as it could get. Between shoveling, pushing and rocking we got the car out and carefully made our way back to Cortland.

Thus after about 24 hours of travel and two hours of sleep I was able to grab a nap. It also was great to get a full nights sleep in my own bed!!

I swear that going skiing is the easiest thing a tough old geezer can do. However, travelling with an airline like Delta surely can potentially wipe us out.

Meanwhile, today was a great day at Greek Peak even though I got there a bit late because I needed to blow snow out of my driveway this morning. It is pure irony that I got 3 to 7 inches of snow each day in Utah but come home to 18 inches of fresh snow at home.

I'll ski any day in any conditions, but I am not sure I will ever want to fly anywhere for a long time.

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