Sunday, June 21, 2009

Now That's High-Class

Yep, that's right. The Charlotte airport men's room has an attendant. For real! He'll hand you a fresh paper towel (from the automatic paper towel dispenser) and wish you a good day. On your way out, you can grab a tiny cup of mouthwash and drop a single in his tip jar. You heard it here first: Charlotte airport is like the freakin' Rodeo Drive of airports.

Down South

I'm heading down to Raleigh, NC, for another fun-filled week of troubleshooting routers and whipping recalcitrant traffic emulators into shape. Should be good times. At least there's tons of great barbecue in the area.

By the way, sitting in the Charlotte, NC, airport right now. When I stepped off the flight from Boston, I was slapped in the face by the hot, stickiness of 90+ degree weather. I guess the South finally recognizes that it is, in fact, summer.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Pics from Puerto Rico

It's only been 3 months, but our pictures from Puerto Rico are up. Did we ever mention that we went to Puerto Rico in March?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Sometimes I Wish I'd Just Dialed In

I've been traveling for business every week since mid-April. Last week I was in Colorado Springs for a one-day meeting. Let me just say that traveling to Colorado for a one-day meeting is NOT worth it. First, it takes a whole day of travel from Boston on either end, since there is no such thing as a red-eye out of Denver or Colorado Springs. Second, there is no such thing as a direct flight from Boston to Colorado Springs and back. Third, and finally, a spate of "tornadic activity", while cool from the ground, makes attempting to fly through or around it a complete pain in the ass.

So the facts are these: My flight from Boston to Denver was delayed a mere 20 minutes, but once airborne those 20 minutes stretched to two-and-a-half hours as we were re-routed up over Canada (twice!) to avoid heavy thunderstorms over the Midwest. I was sitting in the middle seat in the back of the coach cabin, which means there's only 2 inches between your nose and the back of the seat in front of you (less when the asshole in front of you leans his seat all the back), with a tremendously obese woman to my right and a young woman with her 18-month-old son to my left.

Upon finally reaching Denver, I'd missed my connecting flight to Colorado Springs. And then had to deal with United's inept customer service reps as they tried to rebook me. Unfortunately, most of this alleged rebooking involved me running back and forth from gate to gate, being told by the gate agents that the flight was closed or delayed and that I would need to talk to customer service. Their excuse was along the lines of "the weather forced us to cancel a bunch of flights and, of course, the best option for us was to fly all of these passengers to Colorado Springs and make it someone else's problem."

So here I am with a standby ticket for the last flight (already oversold) to Colorado Springs and I have to be at the meeting at 8:30 the next morning. And I do the only rational thing left: I call United, cancel my leg to Colorado Springs, rent a car and drive. In the end, I arrived at my hotel 5 minutes after my rebooked standby flight was supposed to have taken off from Denver.

The moral of the story is twofold: 1) Never fly United, and 2) Denver is close enough to anything in Colorado to make connecting flights not worth the hassle.