Sunday, October 18, 2009

Let me tell you a story…

… about our last day in Philly and our trip back to MN. It was quite an adventure. It started out pretty normal. We rounded everything up from Dad’s apartment and had some yummy bagels for breakfast. We left the apartment and checked out the Russian supermarket and also a mansion not far from there. Then we made our way to Philadelphia Park since Mom hooked Grant and I up with free $25 each for signing up for something at the casino there. We gambled that and then watched a horse race and headed for the airport so we’d arrive around 2:30pm. We said goodbye to Dad and that’s when the craziness began.

We attempted to check in for our flight at the self check-in kiosks but it said our itinerary required help from the service people. So, we stood in the loooong line for about 45 minutes. There were one or two service people helping the first class people and one person helping the people who just needed to check their bags after they checked in at the self-service kiosks. And then there was one person helping the people in our long line. It took forever. While we were waiting a lady informed us that our flight was delayed an hour so we were probably going to miss our connecting flight in Atlanta. Other people in the line were in the same situation so I assumed they had everything under control and some sort of plan to get us to MSP on an alternate route. So, all we’d have to do is wait the extra hour and maybe get in to MSP a little later than planned. That made the long wait in that line more tolerable since we had an hour to kill anyways. When we finally got to the front of the line around 3:30pm, the three of us went up to the desk together to a lady that was available. We explained that we couldn’t check in on the kiosk and needed to figure out how to get ourselves to MSP. She informed us that it was not likely we’d make our connecting flight in Atlanta since our flight from Philly was delayed an hour and they wouldn’t wait for us. She said there was no way to let anyone in Atlanta know that the whole flight was going to be late. She then went on to tell us that all the other flights from Atlanta to MSP for tonight were full. She said she could put us on our normal delayed flight and we could hope they’d wait for us or hope to be on standby for a later flight from Atlanta but she didn’t think it was very promising and we’d probably be stuck in Atlanta for the night. To make things even worse she said all flights from Atlanta to MSP on Monday were also full so we’d probably be stuck there until Tuesday. Oh but they would pay for our hotel room. How nice. I asked if they’d also pay for our days at work we’d miss ;) heh heh So we asked if there were any other flights either direct from Philly to MSP or through Detroit or Chicago or anywhere else. Nope – everything was full. Great. So, I said ‘what you’re saying is we’re screwed.’ She didn’t comment. She was definitely not helpful and never even apologized for any inconvenience. What a jerk. We all looked at each other puzzled trying to figure out what the heck we could do. We asked for her advice of what she thought was most promising and she said just getting on a flight at 6am Monday that would arrive around 8:20am in MSP would be the best idea. So even though we were all supposed to be to work on Monday at 8am and it would take a couple hours from the time we landed to get to where we work, we decided we better take it. She gave us a voucher for a hotel room but was not even going to credit us any money for the flight for the inconvenience until Mom asked. Then she gave us some vouchers for breakfast and lunch on Monday and each $100 vouchers to use on our next flight with Delta. Great – like I really want to fly with them again. She told us there was a shuttle we could take to the hotel so we navigated out of the airport to the shuttle. We got on the shuttle and then Heather texted me asking if we could get on a flight from New Jersey or New York since they were only a couple hours away. Brilliant! We hadn’t thought of that. We had the lady stop the hotel shuttle and we hopped off and found our way back to the Delta ticketing counter. Mom budged her way back up to the same jerk lady and asked if there were any flights from those cities. Crap - the latest flights out of those airports were at 6:15pm and it was already 4:30pm and it takes a couple hours to drive there. We wouldn’t make those. Heather had also asked if we were on standby for a direct flight Chris saw on the internet from Philly to MSP that was supposed to leave at 5:20pm. The dumb lady hadn’t put us on standby for that so Mom asked and the lady said it was a Northwest flight so we’d have to go to their ticketing counter and ask. Aren’t they the same company?? Why couldn’t she just sign us up??? She refused to even call someone at that counter to ask them. So we were at terminal A and had to haul our butts all the way to terminal E. We were thrilled. Uhhh. We finally got to terminal E and luckily got a really friendly guy that seemed determined to help us. He checked US Airways for any available flights and checked Delta and Northwest again. Apparently since our delay was caused by mechanical failure they could have put us on a different airline. The dumb first lady never told us that. The friendly dude said he’d put us on standby for the direct flight at 5:20pm but didn’t know how likely it was that we’d get on it since it was already overbooked with three others waiting in standby. But we trekked up to security and waited in that long line and made our way to the correct gate just before it started boarding. When we got there the same friendly dude was now up there checking boarding passes! He started calling people to board and then said ‘Ashley Schnell please come to the service desk.’ OMG are we going to get on??? No way. Sure enough he got us three seats on that flight!!! Ahhh we were ecstatic! That guy rules. Grant even shook his hand. Mom wanted to kiss someone. We were happy to not have to run around the airport anymore! We even made it back to MSP over an hour earlier than we would have on our original flight.

We all had a fun time in Philly even with the airport mishap at the end ;) I’ll post pics tomorrow after work!


  1. ha ha! you guys should have had your pic taken with that guy! :o) glad you all made it back to mn on time and in one piece! that's a great story!

  2. That is quite the story I felt bad I could not help. I should have asked Carmine if one of his friends had a plane to take you home!!!!!
    After it turns out ok it is a great story to tell and remember forever.

  3. Holy moly, Ash you are hilarious! I was just waiting for a comment about missing work and having to use your vacation days, and sure enough you made one ;). I'm SO GLAD it worked out! Also, if we ever have kids, will Grant be our Mrs. Doubtfire? Can't wait to see pics and you guys! -A&B J

  4. Hey Ashley - you didn't mention the part - when we walked up to the Delta counter the first time and I started telling the lady that Delta had already cancelled our flight out of Philadelphia twice on us since we booked the flights - she like scolded me that I need to remember... and she broke out in song "It's the most wonderful time of the year"


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