Friday, January 15, 2016

Headed West - Eventually ...

This morning, Molly and I debarked (that's official cruise lingo) and headed to our DCL bus that would take us to the airport. We boarded (that's official bus lingo) and headed out. Our driver, Mr. Pessimism, asked us (because we were in the front seat) when our flight was due to leave. We told him, to which he replied with appropriate tsk-ing that really bad weather was headed in - with tornadoes and bad wind and pestilence and famine (well, not really the last two, but why not?). Anyhow, of course bad weather is just about the last thing I wish to hear about when I am preparing to fly the skies (which might not be so friendly). And besides, did Dude not think I had already been monitoring the weather?

We get to the airport and check our bags (remember, we had already been at Disney World for nearly a week, then a cruise, so we had a lot of stuff to pack). We were flying American, because that was the earliest flight we could get, and we needed to be at Disneyland in time to get to the expo - we have a race tomorrow. Flying American out of Orlando means you go to the nicer terminal - not the madhouse that is the Southwest terminal (because Southwest is so great with their fares). Anyhow, the "nicer" terminal means there are fewer people and it's quiet. Molly and I sat and wait for our flight. As for me, I'm scanning the skies (when I'm not scanning The Weather Channel on my phone), looking for funnel clouds and such. There's a very angry line headed our way (according to TWC), but I'm hoping we're up and out before it hits us.

We board the plane, and then the pilot announces that the bad weather is about upon us, so we're going to be delayed (along with everyone else coming in/going out of Orlando). Then he says that another plane needs to come into our gate, so we're going to back out and wait a bit. And so we do. And then the weather hits. It's windy and rainy, and the airplane does flitter a bit. But I much prefer flittering on the solid ground than I do in the air, so all is good. After about 45 minutes, the bad stuff has passed and we head west - toward Dallas, which is our stop on the way to Orange County. I looked at the movies (because on American, you get to watch them) and am happy to see that "The Martian" is playing. I haven't seen it but have read the book, so I'll be occupied for a bit. HOWEVER, flights from Orlando get to see "Toy Story" instead. Super - I haven't seen it in days ...

We had about an hour between flights at DFW, and if you've paid attention, then you will realize that that hour has been eaten up with bad weather. So, the question remains - will we make our connection? Apparently there are others on our flight that are also trying to make this connection - will the plane wait for us? As we are landing, the flight attendant calls out the gates for the connecting flights - our will be at gate C-something, which is several shuttle stops away from where we are landing. She says nothing about our plane waiting for anybody. Molly has pulled up our flight info for the flight that we are supposed to catch, and finds out that we could apparently wave to our almost-passenger-mates, since they are taking off as we are landing.

Molly starts texting with Steve, who says to stop at the first American desk we come to and not wait until we get to the gate we were given. Once off the plane, we head to the nearest one. Once the gate agents stops flirting with the bag handler, we tell her out dilemma. She pulls up our information and says, "Ms. Luanne, you are now scheduled to go out tonight through Phoenix, and Ms. Molly, you are scheduled to go out tomorrow morning." We promptly tell Ms. Gate Agent that this will not work, since we need to be at the start of a 10K in the morning. She then fiddles with her computer, wondering aloud why they booked us those flights, and promptly found us seats on the next flight out, which would be leaving in about 45 minutes. She started saying things about getting seats together, to which we replied we didn't care - we just wanted seats - and soon we had our tickets in hand and headed to our gates.

We had a bit of time to relax until boarding started. Which we eventually did. On American, there are several boarding groups - First Class, Business Class, Rich Class, Emerald Club, Ruby Club, You-Name-It-Club,First World Alliance, I'm Better Than You, and It's My Lucky Day, before they actually start with the boarding groups. Molly was in Boarding Group 2 and I was in Boarding Group 4, which meant I would be boarding just before they closed the door. Whatever - we are on the plane! Of course, when I finally arrived at my seat (a window, thank you), two adult men were already on the row, and were like, super-thrilled for me to have to wedge my way into my seat. Whatever - I am on the plane!

Eventually we made it to Orange County where Steve picked us up. We checked into our hotel and made it to the expo where we picked up our race stuff and headed back to the hotel Race tomorrow!!

Flying over the mountains is always so beautiful!
Thankful today for: checking bags and quiet waiting at airport; weather passing over for a safe, smooth ride; helpful gate agent; getting to Orange County and Steve picking us up; dinner with Molly and Steve at Earl's

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