Remember, your closest exit may be behind you.

So, we went to Ohio this past weekend to visit friends, and to go to a wedding. There was no 12 on the 12th this month because on the 12th of June we were flying all day. I did take pictures all day, but they all ended up being pictures of the ground from the airplane window and pictures of Southwest planes. I will make up for it by doing a 12 on the 12th-16th post instead. But, that's for another time. So are reports of the gorgeous wedding I went to. This time we are sharing together right now is for my complaints about airlines other than Southwest. Our trip to Ohio was happy because we were flying Southwest. With their pretty planes and happy people and no fee for a second checked bag. Yes, I feel the LUV. Anyway, we had a connecting flight in Phoenix (where it was 101 degrees) and we came in late and I was afraid we would miss our connection. But when we got off the plane, our connection was the gate directly next to us and we made it without a problem. [Sidenote: has anyone else noticed that you always get off the plane faster on Southwest than any other airline? Other airlines take forever and a day, but on SWA you're practically off the plane before you get to the gate. It's ridiculous.] The rest of the flight was uneventful. Now let me address the return trip. On Delta. (booooooo. hisssssssss.) First of all, the wedding was in Cincinnati, which we drove to from Columbus, where my friend Dana lives. So, Sunday morning (the same day we were flying home) we woke up in a hotel in Cincinnati. When I was booking our flights, I thought it would be logical to just fly from Cincinnati, right? The flight from Cincinnati to SF on Delta (no Southwest flights from Cincy) was $590. But the total price flying from Columbus to Cincinnati (picking up that same flight I just mentioned) to SF was $140. Clearly, I should have known then that this was a bad idea. Anyway, we get to the airport and a bunch of people at the Delta ticket counter are pissed because their flights have been cancelled. (Danger Will Robinson.) We grab some Wendy's for dinner, I get a Frosty which they promptly take away from me at security (it's not a LIQUID. it's a SHAKE. bastards.) We get to our gate and our flight isn't listed on the board. (Warning: this trip will suck.) When they do put the flight up, almost immediately it says "Delayed," of course, without saying how long it would be delayed FOR. And of course, we have a really short layover in Cincy. So, when Dan calls the national Delta ridiculous automated system, we find out that the flight to Cincy won't be taking off until it was actually supposed to land, so we probably will be missing our connection to SF. So, we make alternate arrangements, the next flight being at 6 AM the next morning. Grrrrreat. Because we all know how perky I am at 5 in the morning taking off my shoes and making sure to put my laptop in a separate bin. Whatever, it's fine because at least we can stay with Dana for free instead of getting a hotel. Cool. Until the power goes out at 11:30. It is hot in Ohio in June. **If you afraid of flying, or more accurately, of crashing while flying, please stop reading now.** We get back to the airport the following morning (yes, at 5 AM) and all goes well. We have to fly to Atlanta on a relatively small plane, but all is going well, so it's cool. Our flight attendant was ridiculously flamboyant, so it was nice - a snack and a show! About 10 minutes before landing, the captain comes on. "Ladies and gentlemen, we'll be landing in Atlanta in about 10 minutes. Ahhhhhhh so we don't want anyone to be alarmed when we land, as we are anticipating a fully normal and safe landing, but there will be safety equipment and fire trucks near the runway when we touch down as we are currently experiencing some ahhhhhhhhhh abnormal indications on our engines right now. Again, we are anticipating a safe landing, please do not be alarmed" HahahaWHAT?!?!. So he drops that little bomb on everyone and then the plane PICKS UP speed. Significantly. I've flown a lot in the past few years, and I have never taken a landing at that speed. Were we trying to break the sound barrier? Anyway, so we did land and obviously everything was fine, but lo and behold, there were fire trucks and ambulances all over the place with their lights blazing, ready to...I'm not really sure what. So we finally slow down (it takes awhile) and then the captain comes back on. "Well ladies and gentlemen, we've touched down safely in Atlanta and while we think everything is perfectly fine, we're going to pull over to the side of the taxi-way and the fire trucks are going to circle the plane to visually check that everything is ok. Again, please don't panic, they are just reconfirming that everything is alright and then we will proceed to the gate." So these lovely fire trucks circle around, we're all inside also checking the planes for, you know, flames and smoke, but nothing. Dan and I at this point are, of course, making inappropriate jokes and generally using cynicism and sarcasm to defuse the potentially very nerve-wracking situation. We have determined that the conversation to the control tower went something like this: Pilot: "Hey Atlanta, this is Delta flight 2952, and ahhhhhhhhhh we seem to have a bit of a situation here. Ahhhhhhhh there seems to be flames coming from the back of our left engine. Over." Control tower: "Mmmmm k. What we're going to need you to do is just go ahead and pick up some speed and that should go ahead and put those flames right out. Over." The flight from Atlanta to SF was, of course, delayed. So yeah. Travelling is awesome. Don't fly Delta. The end. PS: My most important question remains unanswered: If the plane HAD been on fire, would we have gotten to use those sweet emergency exit slides?


meghan said...

1. I LUV SW. But Columbus is quite a trek and it seems every time I drive out that way there is a) a major accident that makes me miss my plane or b) my car breaks which makes me miss my plane. Grr.

2. Unless flying to Dulles on some ridiculously random United deal, never fly out of Cincinnati. SO esspensive.

3. Glad you're safe and sound after a fun, sound barrier-breaking landing!

4. I have ALWAYS wanted to use those slides!

Uncle Mike said...

Oh, to be young and having so much fun all the time. I'm so jealous! (Glad everything worked out well enough for you to give me a chuckle.)