So, no big surprise, my seats were borked for my flights to Vancouver. Not that my flights weren’t a mess as well. Apparently, there is no way to fly from Vancouver to Charlotte in daylight hours or from Charlotte to Vancouver by anything but a circuitous route. Ah well, at least I can get my seats fixed – right? Sounds easier than it was. Couldn’t do it from the website. Hm… that’s new. Maybe cause it is Canada.
I call the USAirways number. I get an automated menu system. English. Flights to Canada or the US. Existing reservations. "If you wish to change your reservation, seats, etc. please call [toll free number]. Thank you." *click* Mmmmkay – they gave me the number I called. Call back. English. Flights to Canada or the US. New reservation. (Figuring the idea of getting new money might be more exciting than dealing with people that have already turned theirs over). I get "Dan". Dan tells me he can’t fix my seats because it is an America West flight. I tell him multiple times it is not. He transfers me to America West. They tell me it is a USAir flight. I tell them I know that but Dan doesn’t. They transfer me back. I get told that I can’t get a seat until I get to the airport. Uhhhhhh…..
Arrive at the airport at 5:30 in the morning (love the new security stuff). Check in. They can’t give me a seat. Erm. Tell me to go to the gate. I ask about my connecting flight boarding pass. They can’t print that because it is an America West flight. Starting to feel a bit like this is Groundhog Day. I go to the gate and FINALLY someone can give me a seat. But no boarding pass for second leg. I get told to check in early at the next gate. I’d love to – but my flight leaves 45 minutes late and my layover time is 1 hour. I go screaming across the Phoenix airport, racing up to the gate, thanking my lucky stars that I packed all my stuff I needed for Monday in my backpack (except for toiletries, of course – no one needs to brush their teeth anymore according to TSA). They ask me for my boarding pass. I tell them that they need to print it. Argue, stupid comments, more arguing, finally get pass. Finally get on plane.
Couple is sitting in E and F. My seat is F. I point out that my seat is F (note this is after 4 hours of flying with 4 more to go and I’m getting a bit cranky). Husband says "My wife likes the window." I reply that in the future she should request it then. He tells me that it is better for her to sleep and she likes to watch the arrival. I tell him that she isn’t the only one and I’d like my seat, please. He asks why I’m "being difficult". I point out that I’m not being difficult, that seats are assigned and considering I just got my seat 5 minutes before they could have easily requested a change when they checked in. Skymuffin tells me to just sit down so we can take off. Wow and yeesh. Five minutes into the flight, hubby is snoring loud enough to overpower the engine noise. I seriously consider smacking him in the forehead with my book. Wife (still in my seat) apologizes. I respond that while an apology is nice, waking him up (or duct taping his mouth) might be more helpful to the people around us. She stares out my window. The guy in the row behind me starts obviously kicking the husband’s seat. I start considering a career change and stick my nose in my book.
4 hours and two bags of stale pretzels later, we arrive. Husband and wife team start protesting to the skymuffin that they don’t need to fill out customs and immigration forms because they are going to Alaska on a cruise. Skymuffin points out that the cruise leaves from Canada. Husband says "But we are Americans". I suddenly realize why people in other countries are stunned when Americans don’t act like asses if these folks are "regular tourists". He continues to mutter (loudly) about how he shouldn’t have to fill out forms "just to go to Canada". I suggest that perhaps the US should stop worrying so much about people coming in then and get rid of all those annoying border control folks. He tells me "That’s different."
Dunno about you folks, but I’m hearing the hooves of the Horsemen in the distance…