Getting There

September 12, 2015 at 9:45 am 5 comments


Location: O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, Illinois

Traveling can be a drag. Oftentimes, it’s the getting there that’s the problem. First, you have to deal with airport security. Under the current scheme, everybody is deemed a potential terrorist. Nothing is left to chance. After removing your coat, emptying your pockets, and taking off your belt and shoes, you’ll be required to go through the body scanner or metal detector and be patted down if it’s your lucky day. All your carry-on items are also subject to X-Ray inspection. It’s great if the lines aren’t that long, but don’t bet on it.

Once you get through security, it doesm’t hurt to heed the sign outside the exit gate. It says “Shop, Dine & Relax.” It’ll help you take stock of yourself before dealing with the flight itself. You’d likely find the plane is booked to capacity and the seats are narrower from the last time you remember. Well, it isn’t only because passengers on the average are getting larger, but it’s also because airlines are finding ways to add more seats to improve their bottom line. In addition, there’s the possibility that the flight will be delayed or cancelled.

Take the case of my recent trip to Scotland. Although I planned for it well in advance, it didn’t start as smoothly as I expected. You could blame it on the weather. I flew from San Francisco to Chicago to catch a flight to Edinburgh. Due to a thunderstorm, the plane was diverted to Wisconsin airport and stayed there for four hours. It followed that by the time it landed in Chicago, I had already missed the connecting flight.

The airlineโ€™s customer service rebooked me for the next day’s flight. Since the delay was weather-related, I had to pay for the hotel accommodation myself. I called Holiday Inn and got a reservation. It was around 11 p.m. when I arrived at the hotel. When I asked for my room, I was told that I had no reservation.

“You must be kidding me,” I said. “I called from the airport about an hour ago and somebody got my credit card number and warned me that I will be charged whether I show up or not.”

“Could your reservation be in another Holiday Inn? There are several in the area.”

“I don’t think so. This is the number that I called from my cell phone.”

“Yes, that’s our number.”

After checking further, she finally found it.

It was almost 12 a.m. when I got the key to my room. By then, I was already dog-tired and all I wanted was to sleep. And yet, I hit another snag. I couldn’t open the door. It was double-locked from the inside and hotel maintenance had to be called in to fix it.

The next day’s flight to Edinburgh didn’t go as well. This time it had nothing to do with the weather. It was mechanical in nature. After we boarded the plane, the pilot suspected something wrong and we had to disembark. It took hours before the plane was certified for the trip. But the flight had to be delayed once again because if it were to continue, the current staff would exceed their allowable work hours. It took a couple of hours more before the issue was resolved.

Traveling can indeed take us out of our comfort zone. Despite the inconveniences, however, we’ll continue to hit the road or fly whatever the case may be. If anything, the hassles and the attendant stress become part of the adventure.

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A Dying Wish Inside Scotland: Great Scott, I Made It!

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Getting There  |  September 12, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    […] Source: Getting There […]

    Reply
  • 2. lifeconfusions  |  September 13, 2015 at 9:11 am

    Ah well as you said so yourself everything can happen as a part of your adventure ๐Ÿ™‚
    As someone wise once said “These moments will just be another story someday” ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
    • 3. plaridel  |  September 14, 2015 at 12:38 pm

      zee:

      i think things happen for a reason. but i’d take it. it could have been worse, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  • 4. Suzanne Joshi  |  September 14, 2015 at 3:35 am

    You have a lot of patience. I don’t know if I’d consider it an adventure. At least it gave you a subject for a blog. I think I would have checked for the TV cameras at the motel. It sounds like one of those reality comedy show tricks they pull on people. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Reply
    • 5. plaridel  |  September 14, 2015 at 12:39 pm

      suzanne:

      at least the plane didn’t crash. i had the opportunity to rant about this experience. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply

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