Today’s local Gannett paper’s lead story is about bringing your patience along if you are flying this holiday season. Having done the holiday trip six years ago – so post 2001 – and done it out of an airport other than our local one, I have only one thing to say. I concur with the author that you should bring your patience.
In 2002, I flew to Ontario, California out of Syracuse, NY. I didn’t make my flight arrangements. My sister did. I had to stopovers to get the best price with a fair amount of time at each connecting hub. My flight from Syracuse to Cincinnati was no big deal. Then, the problems started. It was the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and Cincinnati had yet to have snow. I thought that was odd. The airport isn’t really in Ohio but I, also, didn’t really check my forecasts for those connecting areas. Planes needed to deice. Problem was the deicing equipment had yet to be used that season so it had to be brought out and checked over.
We finally got out of Cincinnati. There were several of us on a connecting flight to Ontario out of Salt Lake City. The pilot guaranteed us that the flight out of SLC would be held. That the departing gate was directly across the concourse and it would be no problems making the connection. That was, of course, until we got on the ground. I grabbed my carry-on and left as one of the first passengers off the flight. The pilot had asked us to deplane first as they were holding our connecting flight. So far, so good.
Then, the comical portion of the trip started. My mom, whose house I was headed to, and I are very crafty. I had my carry-on filled with wood-mounted stamps. We were going to make Christmas cards. The carry-on weighed a ton. I was, of course, picked to have additional TSA screening … until they scanned my ticket. They had already given my seat to someone else. The next ticket got the additional screening. I had to wait to see if they could find me a seat on that flight. I was not overly concerned. I just wanted to know so I could call and let my mother and stepfather know if I was going to be late getting into California. They found me a seat.
Little did I know that the seat was not taken to start with. I ended up next to a couple who had a child with them. When no one sat in the seat next to the mother, she buckled the child in. Delta gave that couple all kinds of extras to get that child on the mom’s lap so I had a seat. Worse than that, we went through some ugly Santa Ana winds. I would not have wanted a child on my lap. I wasn’t even sure I wanted one next to me.
All in all, that was the only “big deal” of the whole trip. I flew from northeast to southwest and had one small story to tell for it. The trip back was uneventful until I had to drive home from Syracuse in an early December snowstorm.
The gist of the article in the Press & Sun-Bulletin was to take patience with you. I definitely agree. Also, take a light carry-on.