A day late, but not a dollar short- thank God!

Well, Ron and I are FINALLY home from our convention in Dallas. What an adventure getting here!

It all started Sunday afternoon. We head for Dallas airport in preparation for the flight home. We're early, so we hang until it's time to go. Everything is on time, we board the plane and prepare to leave. We taxi out to the tarmac, and await our turn to take off.

Suddenly, we hear the ding...dong that happens whenever the pilot wants to speak to passengers. So the pilot speaks. "Ladies and gentlemen, we just got word that there are lightning storms occuring around the Atlanta area so our flight will be delayed for approximately one hour. We are expected to get an update at that time. We will do everything we can to get you out of here as quickly and safely as possible." Click. An hour or so later, the same message. We end up on the plane on the tarmac for 2 or 3 hours (so much has happened I forgot exactly) then they brought us back to the gate so people can reschedule if they want or just get out and stretch. We were told to stay close by as were leaving as soon as we had the ok.

Ron and I were seated 5 rows apart for some reason. We opted to stay on the plane. His seat mates had told him that they were rescheduling, so I moved back there. We hung for another couple of hours, for a total of 4 1/2 hours (approximately). We knew we had missed our connecting flight.

We finally get to Atlanta. Go to reschedule our flight- there must have been 300 people in line. Thank God the flight attendant had given everyone the 800 # to call. So while in line I called. They had already rescheduled us- for almost 15 hours later! There was nothing sooner! So, we buckled down for the long haul. And honestly, it was almost fun.

So what in the world do you do in an airport for 15 hours? Well, we got there around midnight. We were tired. So of course, Ron lays out across some seats and passes out. I get out my laptop, figure out how to get (pay) for Internet and I get lost in cyberworld for a couple of hours!

During that time, an airport employee walks over to our section, where Ron and several others are trying to sleep. She has a vaccuum in tow. She looks around at each of them and I swear, gives a small little (malicious) smile. And turns on the vaccuum. One of the other guys jumps up out of a dead sleep. (Did that cleaning woman just smirk?) She proceeds vaccuuming . Done with that, she then picks up a few stray papers and throws them in the garbage. A loud obnoxious sound ensues from the garbage receptacle. It's grinding the garbage or something! Rons eyes fly open for a sec, then he's back out like a light.

Anyway, we split our time between trying to sleep, walking around the airport and eating. Everytime we walked around, we'd pass these boothes where reps from the airlines were trying to get you to sign up for I'm not even sure what (a frequent flyer credit card I think) and they'll give you a free flight. We keep saying "No, No, No!"

I told Ron maybe we should look into it. What the heck,we had all day to do nothing. So we stopped the one time. The rep gives each of us an umbrella as a gift and a paper to fill out. We look at the application and see it asks for your social security number.

One of the workshops we had been to at the convention was to do with identity theft, credit repair and such as we are rolling out a new non-medical plan that includes these services. To steal your ID, all a criminal needs is your name and social security number. Think about all the people that you give that info AND/OR your credit card, bank info and more.

Ron and I looked at each other and said "nope!" The guys were surprised we wouldn't just hand that info over. We left. Ron said, "We should go to another booth and do it again, but I'll ask them for THEIR social security number!" We laughed and decided that would be a fun way to spend 5 minutes.

So we go to the next booth we see. We get our paperwork from them. Ron starts filling his out like he's serious. He gets to the part where you put where you put your SS # . Ron asks the guy why they need that. He says, "I'm not giving anyone my SS#" This guy also seems surprised to hear this.

Ron then asks the guy for a scrap piece of paper. When the guy asks why, Ron says, "I want your social security number." The guys eyes bug out. He's like, "huh?" Ron says, "You give me yours , I'll give you mine."

Needless to say, they wouldn't fork over their social security number OR a frequent flyer card. I'm surprised we weren't "red flagged" -don't let these people back on any of our plane!

Ron and I are both people watchers, or "observers" if you will. Ok, we may just border on evesdropping. So we learned alot about the people around us. Ok, we even gossiped a little.

I mean really, we had to wonder why in the world would that 60-something year old woman be walking around with a mini-skirt, go-go boots and a top that barely conceals her upper half? I mean, she has vericose veins on her legs and the skin on her chest is all wrinkly like elephant skin. She looked like she could barely walk as it was, not to mention with those boots on . Ok, maybe it wasn't quite THAT bad, but...

What are those people over thinking traveling with 5 kids in tow- the oldest being around 7 years old. Not just the hassle of fighting, whiney kids; you could probably send a kid to college for a year on what that trip must have cost .

Is that couple over there "together" or brother and sister? They seem to be having a lot of fun- laughing, giggling, and such. Probably siblings.

Wait! Ron & I were laughing and giggling, too. Is this like a soap opera where we'll find out we are really brother and sister? Ok, a little off track ...

Anyway, we tried to make fun of the whole thing, but we learned a few things.

1. If you are going to bring a computer as a carry on, make sure it's one of those mini laptops- a lot lighter!

2. Bring LOTS of extra money- you never know when you'll be stranded, or for how long.

3. Use rolling luggage or a rolley cart for your carry-ons. Being rednecks and not exactly seasoned travelers, we didn't.

4. Make sure you have your cell phone and computer chargers in your carry-on so you can recharge when necessary. A dead cell phone sucks when in an airport, I'm sure!

5. Make sure you have a book, cards, games a computer or something else to do. The only TV show they have in airports is CNN. After you've watched it for 20 minutes, you have a drift about whats going on in the world.

6. Watch out for the potty monster- the monster that flushes the toilet while you're trying to wipe. Sorry- had to
mention it- might save someone from an accidental amputation!

7. Never accept anything from a stranger asking you to bring said object onto the plane.

"Um..eks-cuuuuse me maam, can you kindly do me a favor? I desperately need this package delivered to the captain. Would you be ever so kind to go into the cockpit and give to the him for me? It is of utmost importance."

Passenger: "I would LOVE to be of help. Here, throw it on top of my case here so I don't forget about it"


Oh yeah, we heard that message every 5 minutes in every airport

8. Terror alert is orange- don't leave any bags unattended. (We heard that message every 5 minutes in every airport.) Like I would LET GO of my computer- I was hesitant to let Ron carry it!

9. Don't believe everything airport employees or your boarding pass says. It's not always true.

10. Bring plenty of snacks! Sometimes, you just want one

11. Bring a spare pair of shoes- I was wearing socks and sneakers and my feet were hot & hurting. THANK GOD neither Ron nor I have stinky feet!

12. Remember to bring spare clothes in your carry-on for the way home, too. Never know when you'll get stuck or for how long

Anyway, there is so much more to tell. Overall we visited 5 airports on the way home and was delayed around 22 hours. But the great thing is, we discovered that we must be right for each other. We didn't get mad at each other, I didn't cry (menopause :-) , and we even had a lot of fun. You'all should try it sometime!

BTW- I am contibuting blogger over at Sassy Irish Lassie's blog. Check it out here

WOW! TWO blog posts in ONE DAY! Me?

For my post on last years convention, go here


Stacy (the Random Cool Chick) said...

Holy Moly that was some return trip!! I love that you guys discovered you are meant for each other by weathering the delay like pros! ;)

the Chacogirl said...

Scary trip! Happy VGNO, from Paraguay, hugs, Brenda

Gena said...

I enjoyed reading this! Bet you're glad to be home.

Carolee / Home4ever said...

There's no place like home...