Great. After all the frustrations of the last few weeks… weeks? Who am I kidding? MONTHS… Tony is stranded at Atlanta airport due to a flight delay.
When we planned this trip, obviously cost was more of an influencing factor than usual. So we decided on a stop over rather than a direct flight as it was so much cheaper.
First leg was Fort Lauderdale to Atlanta with a one hour ten stop over before boarding the second flight to Gatwick, UK. Just about enough time to make the connection with a few minutes to spare. However, the first flight was delayed by 45 minutes. Great. So Tony, along with another 20 or so passengers making the same journey, were boarded anyway. They arrived at Atlanta around the same time as the Gatwick flight took off.
Now I’ve been on flights across to the UK where we’ve been boarded and then told we were waiting for other passengers from a delayed flight… and we waited and waited. I think it was almost two hours we waited. But Did Delta do that? NO!!! They boarded passengers in Fort Lauderdale fully aware that there was no way they’d make their connections. But did Delta hold the connecting flight so the 20 or so passengers could make it? NO! So it took off right on time.
But wait, there’s a later flight going out of Atlanta… but it was fully booked. The airline staff at the desk kept Tony, and others, waiting for over an hour while they sorted things out. No hotel offered as the delay was due to the weather but they did kindly give him some food vouchers for his 24 hour stay at the airport.
Another passenger suggested they ask to be put on standby for the later flight. This wasn’t actually suggested by the airline. So they found another desk, asked to be put on standby for the 10.10pm flight. That was delayed due to the cleaning crew apparently. A third of the passengers hadn’t turned up (probably delayed from another flight) so things were looking hopeful. But no, due to the delay, they arrived and were boarded. At the last minute, someone who had put their name down before Tony, was in the process of being handed a first class ticket as there had been a no show. Just as he was about to board, in walked a woman who was VERY late for her flight, no apology and that was the last seat taken. So the other passenger was then given a hotel voucher for the night and off he went.
Tony then resigned himself to the fact that he was stranded for the night. He left home at 10 am saturday morning and it was now 11pm at night and the next available flight is 5.20 pm Sunday evening. That arrives at 7am (local time) Monday morning in the UK. He’ll have been travelling for 48 hours by the time he gets here.
I spoke to him this morning, which was around 3.30 am for him. He was cold, thanks to the air con pumping out all night although he had found a nice armless bench to lay on. The lights were all blazing away and the TV’s were all left on. If that wasn’t enough to keep him awake, some cleaners and security officers reguarly walked past talking or laughing at the tops of their voices just to make sure no-one got any sleep.
Although he has his laptop with him, there’s no free access at the airport and currently he’s refusing to pay for it. We’ll see how desperate he gets through the day.
So there we have it. Another frustration to add to the long list. Today we should have been having a relaxing day together. Instead, Tony is exhausted and stranded and I’m sat here worrying. It would have been a nice easy drive to collect him from the airport this morning. Now, I’ll be driving up and back in rush hour traffic and trust me, you don’t want to be anywhere near London in Monday morning traffic. I’ve also had to speak to my boss as I’m not going to be here for the start of my working day.
I hope Tony does eventually get some sleep on the flight back tonight but I doubt it. So tomorrow he’ll crash when he gets here and then it’ll take him days to get over his jet lag. Thank goodness he’s not here just for one week.
So, would the person, persons, Gods, long gone ancestors, spirits in the sky, fate or Karma, whatever/whoever you are, please stop testing us… we want to be together, Ok? Live with it!