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Archive for the ‘Gettign the Heck outta Dodge’ Category

In the last week I have spent 3 nights in Las Vegas with my Mom and Stewart on a “Girls Only but Stewart Can Come too Shopping Holiday”. Although it was a real treat to get away I do have a little ranting and raving to do about the holiday.

United Airlines/Ted has to be the second worst carrier I have ever flown (Worst? America West! Hands down biggest goat-fucks ever!). Although the staff in Hickville City and Denver were fine (totally excellent in Denver) and Flight Crews were great;  the airline staff in Las Vegas had to be the slowest, laziest and worst we have ever encountered (funny how my issue with America West was Las Vegas based…. hmmmm).

The Las Vegas ticket agent was likely the slowest person I have met in my life. It played out like this:

Scene: get to the counter and produce the online printed tickets for 3 people – 2 flights each; so 6 tickets total. Nita puts her suitcase (which is the largest of all 3 suitcases) on the weigh-scale.

Ticket agent takes tickets and decides that the tickets need to be ripped apart from the paper they were printed on so that they will be standard ticket size. One by one he fold the paper 8 times slowly over and over to create a crease to rip on. He then picks the paper UP and rips it – not smart enough to hold the damn ticket against the counter after folding one time and RIP…… seriously it took close to 10 minutes for him to shoddily rip 6 pieces of paper. In the meantime for the full 10 minutes my suitcase is on the scale and he is looking at it.

ticket agent: Your bag is too heavy. 58 pounds the limit is 50 pounds.

Nita: the other two bags are way underweight – can’t we just call it even?

ticket agent: Nope

Nita: how much to add the 8 pounds?

ticket agent: $100

Nita falls over throwing a fit (not really).

ticket agent: Just put 8 pounds of stuff in your Moms bag then it is all even. (like my Mom wants my dirty panties in her bag – yuck).

The fucker agent made me take the bag off the scale to transfer the items (previously the airlines would let you pull out the 8 pounds and transfer it instead of guessing like we did) and put them in my Mom’s bag. So once we guessed mine down to 50 pounds he tossed it on the convayer belt without even letting me lock the damn thing up. There was a 700$ purse in there with no lock on it! Ugh.

Now, I totally understand the weight restrictions (my father busted his back as a baggage guy all his life) but seriously this was a medium suitcase (not large) with nothing heavy in it. Way too many airlines have dropped the 75 pound baggage down to 50 pounds (YAY WestJet – still 60 pounds). What really irked me is he kicked us out of line so he could help other people. Hey asshole? You spent 10 minutes ripping 6 tickets – I don’t think customer service is your forte, so quit faking it. Oh and you could of told me that the bag was overweight since it sat on your scale for 10 minutes while you ripped the 6 tickets.

We finally get to the gate to see out flight is delayed 30 minutes. Not too big of a deal but we have under an hour in Denver to make our connection to HickVille City – and the ground crews in Denver are not exactly known for getting your plane to the gate on time either. It is already starting to look like we will miss our connecting flight.

Stewart (being an Air Traffic Controller) stands in line for the gate agent to find out what is going on and if we can rebook out connecting flight for a later time that night (or the next morning). After standing behind another customer (who is slightly stupid, fakes not knowing English and is rude as well) from HickVille City who needs to get the same flight info; the staff gets fed up with him and closes the wicket right in front of Stewart. During this time Stewart hears them blaming the delays on Air Traffic Control. This royally pisses Stewart off since he knows better. ATC does not delay aircraft; over-scheduled Airlines in over-scheduled Airports cause flight delays. By blaming delays on Air Traffic Control airlines do not have to be responsible for providing you compensation (or hotels overnight) if your flight is screwed up. Convenient hey?

Finally we board the plane. I am sitting in row 12. The cabinet that houses the drop down oxygen mask over my head has opened and the man beside me is trying to close it. We all know that this will cause further delays if a flight attendant notices it. They notice it. Now we have a mechanical delay (25 minutes) which now makes the airline liable for our hotels in Denver that night. Small YAY!

A mechanic shows up with no tools to fix it, and we joke with him to duct tape it closed. He says he can not do that and goes to get “clearance” to do a repair. Guess what the repair was? Tape. Didn’t stick but whatever – I got moved to upgraded seating. After that we sat on the runway for some time for the “paperwork” to show up so the plane can take off.

When we got to Denver we electronically got our tickets for the next flight that was available (the next morning) and headed to United Customer Service to see what if any compensation was being offered for the night.

The staff was awesome and pretty organized considering almost 100 people missed their connections. We were sent to a pretty nice hotel in Denver and given vouchers for breakfast the next morning. Since we would not get our luggage back (it was going to take 4 hours to get it) they provided toiletry kits with everything you need to not smell funky the next day. Needless to say we had to sleep naked that night (which seriously I do not do naked) but overall it was pretty good (except for the pussy ass cab driver to the hotel).

So what did I learn?

  • Flying out of Las Vegas on any American airline is a gong show.
  • Denver seems to be a nice city – I think Stewart and I will do a mini holiday there soon.
  • Flying when pregnant and still fighting morning sickness = not too fun.
  • I need to wear more comfortable shoes in Vegas.

Next Post: about the shoes…..

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Back in the day when Stewart and I went on holidays, I used to be attached to the camera to take photos like these:

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Vineyard 1

Which is why I am so damn pissed that this is likely the best photo I took in Victoria:

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In our defense, he was the fattest seagull we ever seen. We named him Artie Lange*.

 

*I don't expect anyone to get the reference

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Victoria B.C.

Recently Stewart and I spent 4 nights in Victoria B.C. and it was freaking awesome.

The weather in Victoria is unlike anywhere else in Canada. In HickvilleCity here we have endured -40 Celsius temperatures and a ton of snow. In Victoria it almost never freezes. Never. It is like they shouldn’t be able to call themselves Canadians  because they don’t even own shovels and snow boots. When we were leaving there were flowers blooming and the tulips were poking out of the ground already. Keep in mind that in HickvilleCity we never get planting done until mid-May, and sometimes get some decent flowering by mid-June. The city is beautiful and there are SO MANY great restaurants to eat at that it really does boggle the mind. The only thing I wish we did was take The Dictator along with us, he could have run around like crazy there and here are also a ton of activities for kids.

The only thing I regret is that we took almost no pictures. So I am posting some photos and links I found online so everyone can see how fantastic it is there.

Merridale Estate Cidery – they grow their own apples and create artisan ciders from them, Also the best croissant I ever had in my life came from the outdoor stone oven where the chef makes fresh bread each morning.

Lure Seafood Restraunt – possibly the best seafood I have ever had. The service and prices were great.

WillowStream Spa @ the Fairmont – best spa services I have ever had. Stewart had a fancy bath, hot stone massage and a facial. I had a facial and an eyebrow tinting. They have fantastic facilities and the hydrotherapy area that you can use with the services is awesome.

When we came home it was tough going with The Dictator. For 3 days he wanted nothing to do with Stewart and was a very difficult little boy to deal with. Tantrums, fussiness, poor eating and a screwed up sleep schedule made all the “relaxing” we did in Victoria completely disappear. He is back on track now and acting like his usual spunky busy self, but Oy! It was rough. Now I have a sick 31 year old to deal with.

I don’t know what is worse: a sick Stewart or a sick Dictator.

Fun times.

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A quick post.

I am updating from VICTORIA B.C. Canada. The weather here is insanely mild and I have had no need for a shovel, boots, winter coats, dishwasher soap or a washing machine.

Excuse me while I do a happy dance…..  

Stewart and I have spent time:

  • shopping
  • eating
  • touring cideries and vineyards
  • driving around marveling that the architecture here doesn’t completely suck like at home
  • spa-ing (amazingly Stewart is a bigger spa princess then I am)

Other then one sandwich I haven’t ate any beef or chicken here. Amazing. We have had Indian food, seafood, and had a night at a great vegetarian restaurant (and bought the cookbook so we could do it at home).

Jealous much?

We shall be back in Alberta tomorrow, where after 4 nights I will get to see my favorite little man (and the worlds greatest dog ever)! We sure do miss him them.

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