Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I am so finished flying internationally...

All right, I am not sure how much sense this blog is going to make because I am fairly certain at this point I have been awake for over 36 hours, with a brief 4 hour nap at an airport hotel in Frankfurt. I have been so close to both crying uncontrollably and bursting into fits of laughter that I am beginning to question my own sanity. Let's recap:

First, Monday, the 15th, I had an incredibly tearful good-bye with Carrie, Jan and Saarbr├╝cken. Already emotionally exhausted, I had to maneuver my way around the Frankfurt Airport (and anyone that has flown in or out of Frankfurt knows that is the opposite of a good time) with everything I owned in Germany somehow stuffed into two bags weighing under 20 kilos each. (Case in point, one of my suitcases was actually 23 kilos, but most people do not like dealing with people who are crying, so the nice check-in guy did not charge me. This is where my positive experience with American Airlines begins and ends).

I cried as I got onto the plane, looked at the window and bid Deutschland farewell. And then continued to sit on the runway. For about 30 minutes. Okay...the Captain then gets on the announcer-thingy and informs us that there is a problem with the fuel pipe, and maintenance needs to come take a look at it. Great. So I stare at Germany some more from the window, getting more and more depressed about leaving, and more and more depressed at the prospect of never making it back to America. 5 HOURS LATER, after sitting on that fucking plane that did not move, sometimes with no air conditioning, no entertainment, and several small children, they inform us that they must cancel the flight and pick it up again tomorrow.

You have got to be kidding me. Normally a pretty calm and collected person when it comes to inconveniences like this, I just about lose my shit. I was so emotionally and physically exhausted that it was all I could do not to burst into tears. Not only that, I had no working phone, and thus no way of contacting anyone in the states to inform them of this stupid delay. I found a very nice woman who let me use her phone, and could not get anyone's phone number to go through, except for Silke, who had her phone turned off. I left her what I can only imagine was an incredibly panicked, incomprehensible message before waiting in line with customer service to see what my options were.

Since I could not call anyone from my phone, but could still receive calls, I prayed that someone would call me, and thank GOD Silke did, and after I filled her in on why I hated traveling and life at that exact moment, she emailed my mother to let her know that her favorite daughter would not be arriving when expected. And Carrie called me a few times during the night to make sure I had not gone on a shooting-spree in the Sheraton. :)

The shitty thing, well, one of the more shitty things about this entire situation, was that I was not flying to Boise, but instead flying to Portland, and had another flight with Southwest airlines the next morning, which I had to rebook for the next day ($80 fee, mind you, which cost more than the original one-way ticket) and had to book a hotel here in Portland for the night I was not planning on staying here. Not only that, American Airlines refused to help me out with any of these issues because, as they put it, it was now Southwest's problem. Um, no. No, jackasses, this is your problem. It is YOUR fault that I had to say good-bye to Germany twice, get stuck at two different airport hotels, WITH NO ALCOHOL, miss my other flights and not make it back to Boise today. I am supposed to be sitting in my living room right now with my cat and Tessa, eating Guidos and drinking New Age. DAMN YOU!

Anyway, flash-forward to this morning, which I just realized was actually 24 hours ago (I hate time changes) I show up at the airport at 6 a.m. to check-in for our rescheduled flight, wait in line for over 2 hours, and then wait another 4 hours for our flight, which is delayed...again. I barely make it to Dallas to catch my connection to Portland and I have to be honest, I am still having a hard time believing that I am finally in the amazing Northwest, a mere 5.5 hours from Boise.

And on that note, here are just some random things I feel necessary to bring up in this blog before I go to bed:

1. I have already had my fountain Mug Root Beer. And I may have cried a little.

2. Big cars, I have missed you!

3. Fat Americans, I have not missed you.

4. After riding on 3 separate flights, all of which had small children screaming at the top of their lungs, any desire I had to ever have children and then travel with them has flown right out the window. I think my ovaries actually shriveled up and died.

5. I am watching Law & Order: SVU...in ENGLISH! On USA! I am so excited.

6. I sort of miss Germany. :(

That is all for now. I hope to blog a bit more next week in Boise, though school starts on the 22nd, so not sure how much time I am going to have. I do have my "Things I will miss in Germany" blog that I need to finish. :)

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