Airlines have crunched down connection times to 40 minutes. In order to get planes in and out. The problem with this that you are certain not to make your connection if anything goes wrong.
While they were pushing our flight out of the JFK gate last evening (heading to Boston, where I'd connect back to seattle)... Something 'went wrong.' Basically, some kind of nose shielding was damaged. The plane had been rolled about 25 feet back. Then paused. Then they told us that something had gone wrong in 'push back' and they were going to roll us back into the gate to assess. The thing was 'easy to fix' if they had the part. 10 minutes later we were deplaned.
While annoying this is a good thing. Especially considering what happened to Alaska flight 536 less than 4 months ago.
So... we waited. There were 14 of us on the flight from JFK to Boston that were hoping to make the quick connection to Seattle. We were told there was a window that they could delay the other flight. Basically, if we boarded the Boston flight, that means we made it in time to catch the delayed flight.
After about an hour we were sitting on the Boston flight getting ready to "push back." So it seemed like they'd delayed the BOS/SEA flight. The cabin doors were closed and then the announcement came on. "We will be unable to delay the Seattle flight. Will all people connecting thru to Seattle please deplane at this time" Seattle folks were told they would be put up in a hotel near JFK for the night.
Now, I'm the product of a mixed marriage. My father was from Brooklyn and my mother was from the Bronx. They may not have agreed on much, but the one thing I learned is that you don't stay in Queens, if you don't have to. I was at the conference and in NY with my S.O. from Boston. I asked if I could travel thru to Boston and get re-ticketed from there. They said, sure.
Since I'm not having to have accommodations, the upside of this adventure is that I have been granted a voucher for one free Boston to Seattle one-way ticket to make up for this chaos. We were too damned tired to try to make our way through the Boston Light Rail. We got down to the cab line and a limo driver said, "Spare Limo... same price as a cab." You see this a lot in Vegas. Basically, there was a no show or a late flight. The limo is authorised to pull cab passengers as long as they charge the cab rate. I don't know why more people don't take advantage of this. While you pay the same rate you'd get in a cab. You get the Limo treatment. The car is of top notch quality, the driver opens doors carries bags to the door. So.. we at least got to ride in style. I explained what happened and he offered to bring me back to the airport for my flight today. (Which will come back to bite me shortly in the story)
Last night at about 11:45 I trudged into my S.O.'s house. Her husband was wonderful as he made me pasta and meat sauce. I contacted a local friend to make lunch arrangements. I did some computer catch up and crashed. We were awoken to the sound of husband growling. My cell phone went off at 6:10am and proceeded to keep getting called back every 2 minutes. I looked at the phone number. Metro Boston. Who in the hell would be calling me from Metro Boston at 6:10am? Oh. I called the number. "Hi is this the Limo company." "Yes sir." "Yes, that was 6:20 PM pick up"
Nice thing about Limo companies is rule 1. Always treat the customer like you want nothing more than to kiss their ass. They were VERY pleasant and apologetic. I will call them mid day to make sure they are still actually picking me up.
So, as a result, instead of getting home at midnight yesterday... My luggage should be making the trip from JFK to Seattle and getting there around 10:30 pm. I will be flying on the same flight tonight as it's the only one they have. So I'll be in at midnight tonight. Shortly I leave for my lunch, um... date?
More on the awesome weekend soon! Now I must email my director about missing another rehearsal. :-p
TCTC #24p2, 4-9-06 - Thelema Coast to Coast