Sunday, July 08, 2012

The Airport

Before we moved to Fayetteville, back in 2004, my husband started a new job. It was listed as including about 40% travel, but that quickly morphed into 95% . While we'd always avoided these sorts of jobs for him (being a couple that did not like separation), this job was a good one that he was enthusiastic about, and the only thing on the horizon. Plus, he was already committed. It all worked out well, leading to where he is today. 
He had several adventures to relate to us about his travels. Recently he was digging through some files and found the first email he'd sent us about his first trip out.  Herewith, 'The Airport'.


I figured I'd borrow a page from Meg's book and let you know what has been going on here. First, the flight.

Air travel (at least according to United) just isn't that great. Take this in the context that United is in serious financial difficulty, and you'll understand.

First, the flight attendants seemed way too casual. They bungled the required seat belt instructions, and things went down hill from there. Mid-way, they came on the intercom and announced that they would be
serving the requisite snacks (about 6 peanuts) and that (1) there were no cups (2) they weren't going to be able to provide water 'cause of  1, (but there would be soda), but due to no ice, it would be warm.

After landing at Dulles, we taxied around for about 10 min, and then were herded into a bus, which gave us a grand ground tour of the airport. There had to have been 40 of us, and the bus seated about 20, so
the rest had to stand and grab ahold of a jungle gym like mess of poles and horizontal bars. Most just grabbed the person next to them. We rode around for around 10 minutes, and then made it to the terminal.

The baggage claim area was up a flight of stairs, down a corridor, down 2 flights, through a construction area, around a couple of sharp corners, back up 2 or maybe 3 flights of stairs on a non-working escalator,
down a few more twisty passages all alike, and then into a huge area with a dozen or so baggage carousels. You had to consult a bank of monitors listing every flight since Kitty Hawk to figure out where your baggage would come out. The baggage already knew this of course, so it hid underground and laughed while you tried to find the right monitor and then the right carousel. Eventually there was a cosmic concatenation,
and baggage began to emerge from the carousels. These things are evil, slanted beings, and you had better be able to run along side to grab at the handles which even though there are ones on almost every side of your bag, there are none close enough to touch. Did I forget to mention that due to the number of people, you have to accelerate, miss, and decelerate in about 18 inches? Wait till the next lap, and repeat. Enough of that.

The to-hotel trip: I met a really nice guy who offered a taxi, (actually it was a large Mercury sedan with leather upholstery, little English, and no meter). Just $29 later including tip, I was deposited in the BACK parking lot of the hotel. It was a dark 9:30 PM, and I estimated that the wedding reception had been going on since at least 2 that afternoon. I needed to get to the FRONT to check in, and it was an open bar, so even though I wasn't wearing a tux, the bride's father offered his condolences for my coming in late, and just drop the bags in the corner, and here's my wife,
and why didn't you leave your bags in the room right after I have another drink for you? She's married, you know.

I was going to tell you about the job, but all my letters are used up. More on that later.  Miss you all, and this are going to be FUN!


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