My trip back from SF. I knew I was going to be rocked because of the West Coast Midwest travel. My flight was scheduled to leave at 6:20pm, which would bring me back to Chicago at around 12:20am. Fair enough, considering that I'm using my miles to pay for the trip. Anyway, trouble was on its way when our flight was delayed coming into SF.
"We will now depart at 6:33pm"... "6:40pm" "6:45pm" "7:00pm". Do you wonder why all the small incriments? Maybe United thinks that we won't notice the smaller differences? Anyway, when we depart really doesn't concern me. When we ARRIVE, now that's a completely different animal. At 7:00pm, we were let into the plane. Per my experience, must get on fast so I have a place for my oversized carryon. And I found one right above my seat. Perfect. I sit down and start doing a Sudoku (I'm so addicted now).
And then came the panicky passengers and stewardess. It's always a bad sign when the plane is about 95% full, and people are refusing to move because they can't fit their carryons into the overhead bins. People started to raise their voices. And then came the steward: "can't you people sit down?" Gee, all that union training, and that's how you herd angry passengers? When it was all said and done, he took some luggage out to check in, and then proceeded to work on the overhead bin where my carryon was. I don't think this description does this justice: but he jumped up, grabed the top of the closing lid, and slammed it against my bag. Of course it wouldn't close, so he slams it again. I'm a bit speechless right now. Now's he's pressing. And pressing. And BANG. He BREAKS the lid! It's now hanging off a piece of metal.
10 minutes later, the pilot comes to inspect the damage, the destroyer disappeared (I'm really wondering what happened to him... back to the story) and a United maintenance guy shows up. With duct tape. Got to love the duct tape technology. He ended up taking the entire lid away (not before, naturally, really trying to break it while pieces of plastic and metal flew into horrified passengers). And my carryon? Sir, you have to check it in.
We're off at 7:45pm, finally! And scheduled for a 1:30am arrival! Yay! Me being me, this of course is not the end of things.
I was waiting for my bag when I noticed the taxi line growing exponentially. So I went out to give it a look, asked how long the line was and so on. And then I found myself locked out of the airport! Apparently some doors are locked from the inside to make sure security is okay. So I had to take this big 10 minute detour to get back inside the terminal. Meanwhile, the clock just hit 2:00am.
After a lot of yelling and screaming (people trying to cut lines at the taxi stand, so on and so forth), I finally get on a cab. "Sir, would you like to share a ride and save $15?" Certainly! Girl gets in after me. Big Fat guy gets in the front. And a forth guy loaded his stuff and squeezed into the back seat. The driver gets in and asks for the destination... and then the forth guy suddenly says "fuck this" and gets off the cab. He swears at the driver and says he will take his own cab. The driver takes the beating and helps to get his luggage out... and proceeds back into the mob to look for a person with similar destinations. 2:30 am.
Finally, he gives up and says "I think we should go." Amen, brother, amen.