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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Sunday, September 16, 2007

TX 0907

Sunday, September 16th, found the Spice and I in Lake Jackson, Texas visiting with OD and family. This statement doesn’t describe the adventuresome, slightly frustrating and somewhat dangerous way our journey played out. The beginning on Saturday morning seemed normal enough, with sister-in-law coming to take us to the airport. Arriving there, we went to the ticketing and baggage check-in area and this is where things starting going awry.

When we got in line with the folks already there we noticed that there were no ticket agents at the check-in counter. Those folks had been told that someone would be with them in a few minutes – this was about 20 minutes before. About 30 minutes later someone came to tell us that the flight had been canceled and the only explanation was that it was because of “maintenance”. They had been trying without success to get a bus to take us all to Atlanta. When we got to the counter they offered us a taxi ride to Atlanta to catch our original flight out to Houston or a later one if we were late.

We took the voucher for the taxi and went back to the entrance area to find one. Our taxi was a mini-van and we shared it with one other person caught in the same situation. Our driver was originally from Ghana, he was friendly and spoke English well enough but the accent was so heavy that one could hardly understand him over the noise of the open windows – “it takes more gas with the air-conditioning on”. When we got safely and very gratefully to Atlanta, I told someone that we averaged 82.5 miles per hour and this counted two pit stops – this was said for effect but the trip was way too fast for me.

By the time we got checked in and bags checked, we had missed our scheduled flight at 11:06 but they put us on another one at 2:15pm. We then went through the dreaded security check and through a misunderstanding; the Spice went through the large scanner through which folks with a defibrillator should not go. Both the Spice and the checking person were a bit shaken by the mishap but she seemed to be OK and I kept a close eye on her for a while.

We went to find our gate of boarding, then wandered about to get something to eat. The hot dogs we had were edible but it would have been a stretch to say that about the Danish we ate afterward. Our plane was finally ready to board and we did so but our surprises were not over. After taxiing out to the take off point, the plane suddenly stopped with a grinding of brakes that sounded like we had a flat tire. The pilot came on the intercom and stated that he was having trouble cranking the right engine and we would be delayed. Needless to say this caused a bit of concern in the passenger cabin.

The fact that I am writing this indicates that it did crank and we made the trip without further incident. OD and her folks were waiting for us at the airport and shared in our last adventure of the day – finding our baggage. It took the better part of an hour for the last bag to appear and we finally headed for their home. All the circumstances did not disturb my peace of mind because this comes from God and I was grateful to have arrived safely. ec


Blogger Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

That, Mr. E., is not a good way to begin a journey! I hope the remainder goes much better.

9/17/2007 03:43:00 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Ah, these trials are all grist for the blogger's mill.

9/17/2007 09:30:00 AM  
Blogger ancient one said...

"Bad Start = Good Ending" (ever hear that ole saying?)

I love the way you write and I smiled when you said the engine wouldn't crank. Truly from the South!

My son worked a while in Pennsylvania. He said one morning he had car trouble. Someone stopped and asked, What's wrong". He said, "It won't crank!" That person asked again and again, "What?" Finally my son said, "It will not start," and the Yankee understood...LOL

9/17/2007 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

SSN - It was not a good start but once here everything has smoothed out and been good.

AC - Yes indeed and I will usually write about most anything or every detail of nothing at all. :)

ancient one - Hadn't thought about that being the southern version of that kind of experience - anyway, we were concerned that it wouldn't crank or start and it finally did both. :) ec

9/18/2007 12:56:00 AM  

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