Virgin's Guide to Burning Man

A Virgin's Guide to Burning Man can be found here.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Leaving On a Jet Plane...And Coming Right Back Again

Toby is having his first major art opening at Harvard tonight and a panel discussion tomorrow evening. His photography is showing up among the top names of night photography. You can check out the details at: I'm so proud of him and I've been so excited for this chance to go to Boston and see his first big opening!

So Toby and I had different flights to Boston since we had to book them separately (long story, not worth telling). His flight went through Denver, and mine went through Dallas. So yesterday we got up at 4 am to catch our 6 am flights. My flight was just approaching Dallas when the captain got on and said he had bad news. Dallas was experiencing lightening, thunderstorms and tornadoes. They were evacuating personnel out of the towers, closing down the air space, and so we wouldn't be able to land there. So they re-routed our plane to Abilene, Texas...which is this little po-dunck town, where the airport basically consists of a couple of silos in a cornfield. We got off the plane to find several other full flights had been re-routed as well, so hundreds of us were stuck together in this tiny little terminal built to serve maybe a hundred passengers. They gave us no information and just kept extending their estimate of when we'd get out of there. Meanwhile, everyone was starving after long early morning flights (since they no longer serve food these days), but there was only one tiny restaurant and a vending machine. I didn't want to wait in the hour-long line to get food from the restaurant, since we had no idea how long we would be there, so I only had a cinnamon roll and a bottle of water from the vending machine.

Finally, after 5 hours of waiting around they said we could get back on our plane and get to Dallas. Meanwhile, of course we had all missed our connecting flights. So I got to Dallas and said if there was any way I could get to Boston tonight I would try to go, but I absolutely had to be back in Santa Barbara on Thursday, so if I couldn't get to Boston soon enough then I'd just have to go back to SB. Well there were no flights left to Boston, so I had to catch a plane back to SB which was leaving in just an hour. So I had to tell Toby I wouldn't make it to Boston, and was gonna miss his first big art opening. I got back on the plane, and finally made it back to SB around 8 in the evening, only to discover that my luggage didn't make it with me--interesting, considering I left on the same plane I came in on, so apparently just keeping the bag on the plane posed too much of a difficulty for them. I checked today and they still haven't located my bag. Sucks. My cell phone charger is in there and my phone is now out of battery.

I guess I can be glad I made it safely and don't have to worry about being back on time. I've been trying to find news reports on it, and it looks like American Airways canceled around 720 flights, and American Eagle (the airline I was on) canceled around 260 flights. I wonder though...Dallas Fort Worth is a large airport, so what happened to all the other airlines? Not that I really want to be carried away in a twister, but why weren't other airlines canceling their flights? The airline industry astounds me sometimes. Basically my lesson for the day: direct flights only from now on.


  1. How sad! What a waste of time, and that really sucks that you didn't get to see Toby's art show. On a bright note at least you were the one who missed it and not Toby. Sometimes I really hate traveling.

  2. That sucks. We are going to DC on Saturday - 2 stops going over and 1 coming back. I think I'll start praying now.

  3. Yes it's definitely a good thing Toby made it safely. I am really starting to hate traveling too. It's like they're purposely TRYING to make it as difficult and obnoxious as possible. Not to mention it is now Thursday and I still don't have my luggage.

    Yay for DC! But I would definitely suggest packing any snacks you can into your carry-on since they don't feed you anymore on flights, especially if your layovers aren't long enough to get a decent bite to eat.

  4. They still feed you on flights to Hawaii! At least Hawaiian and United do, not sure about the rest. And the Hawaiian food is actually pretty good.

  5. Don't worry, I am "lucky" enough to have a 4 hour stop in Chicago. I know there's a Chilis there... :)

  6. Well, babe - on the bright side (or cold, wet, gray side) you're not missing that much. It's been horrid here weather-wise, and I was working all morning for the client meeting tomorrow. And we managed to get most of the panel discussion on video... and of course hundreds of photos. I'll see you tomorrow! :)


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