Today was the trip where everything went wrong, however, it worked out better than I had planned in the end.
Start with a flight at the ass crack of dawn. Blarg. I wish cheap flights were at a normal time of day, so that I'm pulling into ticketing with the sun up already instead of it being inky dark outside. I had a feeling I'd forgotten something. I can't seem to figure it out...
Anyway, I get through security and everything, and at the gate I find out that the flight is delayed due to mandatory "crew rest". These are the little things about air travel that boggle my mind. (just like the fact that a flight from Milwaukee to Toronto is $200 higher than the flight from Madison that transfers onto the exact same flight in Milwaukee to Toronto) If this crew rest period is mandated by law, one would think they would simply figure for it in the schedule. Apparently not. The woman at the gate insisted that I would have more than enough time tomake my transfer in Detroit.
If you have ever been to the airport in Detroit, you know that you will land at the VERY farthest gate on concourse A, and your flight will be departing from the VERY farthest in concourse C. This is easily a 20 minute jaunt, even if you are running most of the way and no Tibetan monks or fundamentalist Christians with strollers get in your way.
At this point, you've probably guessed what is coming next. Of course I missed my flight... oh did I miss it. It took off before we even landed. I got to the gate, they gave me a new flight time, which then would make me miss my bus in Buffalo to get to Toronto. So I call Megabus to see if I can get pushed to the later bus. Megabus is cheap, thus, Megabus is cheap. Their customer service blows sometimes, but you get what you pay for. I get a woman with a very thick accent asking me if I have more than 24 hours before my departure. No, I say. She says, "ah, too badah. weah cannotah do anythingah." She didn't even offer to sell me a later ticket. I ask about it, she then proceeds to ask me what date I would like to travel. Today. PLEASE.
I decide that I am NOT going to sit at Buffalo Niagra Falls International airport for 8 hours waiting for a bus. There had to be another way. *cue lightbulb*
It wasn't my fault or even weather that caused me to miss my connection thus missing my bus. I went and found the closest, least stressed, least busy looking gate agents. "Excuse me, I have a question and I was hoping you'd be able to help me..." and I explained how I was going to Toronto, but because of the crew delay pushing my itinerary back, I would be missing my bus to Toronto. "Would it be possible for me to be put on a flight to Toronto instead of Buffalo?" She smiled and looked at the guy working with her. She tells him that she's got some new things for him to learn about re-routing passengers and their baggage. Jamie and Adam at NWA in Detroit, you are fabulous!
After about 30 minutes of phone calls, urgent messages and the like, I get sent on my way with a shiny new ticket to Toronto. WOOT! Titania 1, God Chaos 0.
So now I've got about 3 hours to kill at the airport, and I'm hungry, so I stop at Einstein Bagels. Lox is possibly one of the few foods that I will never ever turn down. I love the stuff. I thought I would treat myself to a toasty lox and creamcheese bagel. After ordering and paying, they call my name to tell me that they are out of lox. She asks me if I would like to order something else or if I would like a refund. I ask for the refund because I really just wanted lox. The manager comes over with my refund, and then offers me a sandwich on the house for the trouble. Titania 2, God Chaos 0.
Sometimes, everything goes wrong. Sometimes, everything goes wrong and you end up with a ticket to Toronto and an egg and cheese bagel sandwich.
(photograph by Sean Ryan of Toronto, also published at http://travelingmodels.blogspot.com/)