Let me first say that Vegas pretty much rules. Where else can you go and eat all the shrimp and New York steak you can handle for $10.99? Where else can you play 25 cent hands of video poker and get fed free drinks all night? I had a great time playing craps with Julia and Garren and video poker with Keith. However, travel to and from on this trip has stunk.
On the flight out here I was delayed two hours. Not a big deal since it was a direct fligh. However, on the way back it has been a totally different story. I sit here writing this post in the D terminal while waiting for a flight back to Seattle. If this story had happened to anyone else I’d be laughing, so feel free.
1:30PM – Having a 5:00 fligh and having heard that security and lines at Las Vegas can be a horrific experience, I decide to leave the Monte Carlo early for the airport.
1:45PM – I arrive at the airport to find out that my cab does not, for some reason, accept credit cards. After a frantic search for an ATM I get some cash and find my cabby, thankfully, waiting for his fare.
1:55PM – After a few failed attempts at the automated check-in station I am forced to wait in a long line for a real person to check me into my flight.
2:20PM – Arrive in security line and manage to get through security without any difficulties. I’ve learned to: a.) not wear a belt to the airport, b.) wear flip-flops and c.) stow my cell phone, wallet, watch, etc. in my carry one BEFORE getting in the security line.
2:40PM – Sit down to read my magazines, check email and call my Mom to wish her a Happy Mother’s Day.
4:40PM – On the way back from the bathroom I notice my plane is delayed an hour, which means I’ll be missing my connection flight from Phoenix to Seattle.
4:50PM – Stand in line at the courtesy desk and find out that I’ve been booked on an Alaskan Airlines direct flight (yay!) that leaves from Las Vegas at 11:10PM (boo!). It gets better, I’m only “booked” and have yet to get a “seat assignment”, which means I must leave the secured area to go to Alaskan Airlines’ ticket counter to get a seat assignment. This, of course, means I have to go BACK through security.
5:00PM – Make my way to the Alaskan Airlines ticket counter and get a seating assignment. As I’m grabbing the ticket from the counter person’s hand, her manager comes over and announces “Do NOT sell any more to America West.” Thankfully, I had already gotten my ticket, but if I had shown up 2 minutes later I’d have been out of luck.
5:10PM – Get back into the security line and find out that I’ve been marked for “special screening” and directed to another line. Am I fuming at this point? You bet. I get in the “special screening” line and check out my fellow terrorists: two small girls and their mom, a middle aged couple and me. Damn, and I left my turbin at home.
5:40PM – After going through not one, but two different scanners and having my bags completely searched, I finally start making my way to my gate. Oh joy, I get to take a tram over to the other side of the airport.
6:00PM – Hunker down for what will be about a five hour delay. The only bright spot being that there is free WiFi at my gate.
9:00PM – Find out my 11:10PM flight has been delayed until 1:15AM.
5:21AM – Finally arrive home and promptly pass out.
I wouldn’t be so pissed if America West had made some token gesture. Maybe a food coupon for a free dinner? Anything to at least attempt to make up for having me go through the security line twice, barely get a ticket on the next flight and then wait six hours in all to get back home. The best part? You guessed it, I have to pay a cab to get home as my wife will be sound asleep by the time I get home, which I’m hoping will be around 3:00AM Monday morning.