Part I of "It began with.."
It started with Kolchak, and ended with ice cream.
Well, more accurately it started with a Tropical Storm, and the denoument has yet to be enjoyed. It was to begin with a Friday flight at 3:45, cancelled at noon, leaving two desperate travelers waiting anxiously for news on their trip’s misty future. That first, simple, important step was viciously axed into panic as the news came from the unfeeling airline phone operator that “The next available flight is the same one tomorrow- 3:45 p.m.” Pleading and bemoaning their wretched state got some success- or else it was the pitiful mention of an alternate airport- success!! A 5:25 flight that evening out of Richmond.
(insert really awful description of a 2 hr drive on the highway in a tropical storm here.)
Now the Richmond airport, hereafter known as the roach motel airport. Mind you, this was not due to bugs or any health issues of that nature. It has more to do with the advertisement slogan of the roach motel, the passengers check in, they don’t check out. After arriving at 3:30, already weary of the road, our intrepid travelers are told the flight is “just a little late.” 30 minutes to be precise. Time passes slowly, as the airport shops are scoured for a measly deck of cards or two, to no avail. Finally, the plane boards. This is a full hour and change after the original departure time. The flight is fairly full, and finally pushed back about 20 minutes after finalizing boarding. The plane approaches the runway….. and nothing. Waiting, waiting, palms sweating, waiting. Annoying child kicking the seat behind already- a poor portent for the ride to come. And then, over the loudspeaker… “I’m sorry folks we seem to have a computer issue, and we are going to have to go back to the gate. We will make a decision about disembarking you at that point.”
Yes, they disembarked, poor lost souls. They disembarked and waited around for another hour and a half, before being informed that they would, in fact, be taking off that eon. Again they board, again they push back, again they wait. Why can’t the FAA paperwork be done BEFORE the passengers are sitting on the aircraft?? And then, finally, the freedom of the air, and the sweaty grasp of the hand, followed by the kick in the small of the back.
An hour and forty later, they escape, one relieved that the plane has landed safely, and the next flight is several days in the future, the other about to strangle a 5 year old.
Luggage arrives safely, the public transportation is found, life is good until they realize that it is 1 in the frikken morning, and crash in the hotel. Crash Crash Crash Bang Boom.
End Part I. Part II can be found here