12.10.2014

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

This has been a rough couple days for airplane mechanics, I think.
First, my QANTAS Boeing 747-400 from Brisbane to LA was delayed 2.5 hours due to a leaky fuel pump. That was fixed but my sister's family and I both missed our connections to Colorado Springs CO and Madison WI, respectively, in LA. Because the connecting flights were not with a QANTAS partner airline, there was nothing they could do to accommodate us. I thought at the very least they might cover our rebooking fees with United.
Luckily, our awesome travel agent, Kari Tannis, was on the ball when I emailed her the deets from the Brisbane international terminal, which had free wifi (without the weak sauce security hoops to jump through). I had to go dark once we got on the plane, but while we were somewhere over the Indo-Pacific, Kari hooked my sister's family and me up with alternative passage to Colorado Springs CO and Madison WI, respectively.
She put me on a flight from LA to Madison via Denver (an airport I dig infinitely more than Ohare) with a pretty tight layover in DEN. If there had been any significant delays with the LAX to DEN flight, there might have been further angst and confusion, but remarkably, that flight went without a hitch, other than me sitting in a non-aisle seat.
However, the DEN to MSN flight was a different story altogether. I made it to the connecting gate in plenty of time and they started boarding on time. I walked down the "plank" onto the plane and took my seat next to a pleasant enough sort of woman. I put my sestbelt on. I got the sea salted macadamia nuts out of my carry on bag and started munching on some while we waited for boarding to finish and the safety demo to begin. Before that could happen, the woman next to me got an automated text telling her our flight, the one we were presumably on, had been delayed and was boarding at a different gate.
A couple minutes later, the crew announced that, indeed, we had to disembark this plane and go to a new plane at a new gate. Reasons were given...something about an auxiliary power unit that had to go to Madison...but suffice to say that has never happened to me before. And we were delayed about 45 minutes by my estimation. My good friend Sherry gets high eternal praise for tolerating all these delays and staying up extra late to come get me. I owe her big time and I am sure she will fully redeem that debt of gratitude.
On the bright side, I like it immensely more when mechanical problems with planes are discovered on the ground vs. in the air.
I also have a confession to make. I let a huge silent fart drop as I was going through First Class during boarding. Hehehe. Simple pleasures.

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