Ah yes, after flying from Oakland to Salt Lake City, continuing on to Cincinatti, and then on to Burlington, I have returned to the great old north of Vermont. I returned with a nasty cold thanks to my nieces, a greater appreciation of said nieces, and a desire to throttle Delta Airlines.
First, the good of the trip. It was great to see the family again and to see how BIG my two nieces are. They are both AMAZING children who are creative, happy, affectionate, and SMART!! Lucy, who is a couple of months short of two, showed off to me that she can count to ten, and turned an orange slice into a lady bug which she then promptly ate......Along with everything else in the house. Janie, who is now four, greeted me with a massive hug and a kiss, then promptly asked where her aunt was. Thanks Janie, it is good to know where I stand.....When we left the Bay Area yesterday, Janie told me she loves me, planted a couple of kisses on me, and then I didn't want to leave.
Now for the ugly.....I hate Delta Airlines. I could deal with two connections on the way home, that is just standard. What I couldn't deal with was the fact that this beaten up and battered sportsclown couldn't manage to get a wheelchair. Now for those who know me, you know I am not totally disabled by any means; I just have an aching and creaking left knee which makes simple things like walking without searing pain impossible. I knew full well with tight connections, there was no way I could hobble, stop every minute or two, and make the flights, so I requested a wheelchair through customer service. Not only did I do that, but told the flight attendants(Who were VERY nice) the same, and it was to be taken care of. Do you think it was? Strike one!!!!
Going from Burlington to Cincy, there was one, but since we had to change concourses, the dude left me at the bus and I had to hobble up a flight of stairs and then drag the leg behind me. Ya know, he could have called ahead and asked someone to meet me!! I am not hard to miss!! I had a bag, ESPN shirt, and dragging the dead weight of my leg behind me. Not difficult!!! My wife had to fly up ahead to make sure they knew I was hobbling along and would eventually be there, and we ended up making the flight by a hair.
The way home was an adventure all in itself. We got to Salt Lake City with a chair waiting but no one to drag my gimpy butt to the next concourse. I waited, asked for a lift, was told to sit, and someone would be there. Five minutes later, no dude or dudette to drag me, so I had to drag myself. One gate agent actually told me I did not need a chair. Holy fark, I almost lit her up but then realized I had another tight connection to make and had to hobble in a hurry. Yes, we made that one too but I was in serious pain.
Fast forward to Cincinatti where I had again arranged the chair, and it was waiting for me thanks to a very kind and vigilant flight attendant named Jennifer who made sure my chariot awaited. The designated driver was hysterical when he said he was expecting an old man. He took me to the bus, we cracked jokes, and he actually called ahead to have someone meet me. Small problem........No one was there. I asked a couple of people for a lift, they looked at me like I had three heads. Finally some old coot had me hobble with him to get a chair, and I was at the gate. Oh yeah, one more thing.....Man alive that is a long walk in the commuter terminal to get from the gate area to the actual gate. A lift would have been nice!!!
Of course I fired off a nice little e-mail to Delta about the whole deal. Needless to say, I was one miserable radio dude whose knee needs to be chopped off with a chainsaw.