Saturday, September 07, 2013

Only an hour and 15 minutes to SLC.

Already this is a much nicer flight. It's quiet, I am in a row of empty seats (yay!) and the views are nice from the window. No screaming kids. (Note to self, look into recommendation of Bose noise canceling headphones). We're flying over the desert now, not like eastern Oregon but a much more uniform, homogenized, nondescript desert. 


Why are planes so goddamn filthy? It's bad enough they smell like BO and that bright antibacterial lavatory scent. My seat, tray table and windows are a crumby, smeary, schmutzy mess. These airlines should really be embarrassed.

From what I've noticed today, I'd have to say that the cabin crew on the flight seem very nice and accommodating. This might be partially due to sharing a close proximity with us cattlepassengers for an unspecified length of time. Ground crew and ticket agents, on the other hand, can all eat a bag of dicks. I have never had to resist such a strong urge to tell people to sit and spin. And those TSA assholes--don't even get me started.

I've had a very eventful day that started about 4:30 this morning. I opted not to bring my laptop and instead bring my iPad. I hope I don't regret that decision. I've brought a myriad of activities to keep me busy throughout my traveling adventure. Right now I'm listening to God Lives Underwater's "Life in the So-Called SpaceAge." I think it is a good album, even if it isn't metal. \m/

I refuse to go to the bathroom on a plane. After one of my brothers confessed that he only urinates in lavatory sinks, I decided that he was admitting something to me that sadly, something that many people will not. On travel days, I limit my fluid intake and hold my pee until I'm doubled over and toxic. Once we touch down, I have no shame and will literally push people aside to get to terminal bathroom. 

I'm on my way to New Orleans, or "Nawahlans" as many people have corrected me. I started this journey in Portland on a plane that was supposed to leave at 7. We were delayed until 8:45 by a "strike plate" issue. Thanks to the magic of google, I learned that the strike plate keeps the cabin door secure while in flight. Sooo yeah, kind of important. The ground crew gave us vague updates and unrealistic delay times, and mentioned on several occasions that the paperwork was the hold up and the strike plate was a non-issue. Does non-issue mean they fixed it?? I'm hearing these intercom updates and beginning to think that I will be cutting my connection very close. When we finally boarded, the ground staff insisted that I check my carry on due to "a lack of space." I explain I have a tight connection and prefer to have it with me. They explain that I can't take it on and sincerely lied that it would be quick and no problem to retrieve at LAX. 

The flight finally takes off and my seat is encircled by screaming, unhappy, bored little kids with loud, repetitive and noisy toys. Fuck me! I tried to sleep through the world's longest 2-hour flight. After we touch down, an interesting dilemma unfolded: my connecting flight, which was due to take off in 14 minutes, was parked at the gate where our plane needed to park. To add insult to injury, the captain came over the speakers and announced that we had to wait about 25 minutes on the Tarmac before we could deplane. I frantically called Delta customer service for my seat and proceeded to lay out my whole situation. 

It turns out they rebooked me--onto a third connecting flight. I would have never known if I didn't email, no voicemail, just a big travel mystery. So this new connection also has a narrow window to get from gate A to gate B. I charge out to grab my checked carry on and what do you know, it's not anywhere to be seen. A couple of bitchy ticket agents snarkily told me that I needed to be patient when I attempted to explain my urgency. Me and a pile of other people who were on my flight watched a lackadaisical ground crew bring the carry-on bags to where we were one at a time. Oh how hard it was to fight the urge to help them speed things along! After an eternity, I grabbed my bag and booked it to...aargh! I don't know where I'm going! I'm in airport hell!

I emerge from the gate into a bright, unfamiliar airport. I have only visited LAX a handful of times and was pretty sure I'd never been in this terminal. I ask a few Delta staff where my next gate was and after 3 conflicting answers, I made it to my gate just I time. I swear, it was like a scene out of a movie, I literally ran down the thruway and as the flight attendants were in mid-shut, they saw me and opened the door back up to let me in. 

The flight to Salt Lake City was pretty good for the most part. Towards the end we encountered some wicked turbulence and I almost lost my cookies. I'm on the ground now, killing time before my *third* flight down to New Orleans. I wish I could have skipped PDX to LAX and just came straight to SLC to pick up a connection to NOLA. 

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