Thursday, September 9, 2010

Back Home (finally)

It was a sad and tearful goodbye yesterday as we left Josh at the airport. We arrived 2 hours ahead of our flight to find out that our 4 p.m flight was delayed by 45 minutes. . . not a problem, except that we had only 45 minutes to change planes in Atlanta. After a conference with the Delta clerk, we were told that our choices were: reroute to Detroit, and then back to St. Louis, or wait for a later flight, which would get us into St. Louis 2 hours later (we were already pushing the envelope with a late arrival). Neither option was good with 2 young travelers, by now exhausted as well as their mother and grandmother! After some pleading, we talked the clerk into double checking on getting us on the earlier 3p.m flight to St Louis. I think she took mercy on us as she looked at Maddie with a tear streaked face, and Mason as he was climbing around on the luggage check in station. There was a look of understanding that passed on her face as she told us that we would have to hurry because they were already boarding our flight. We RAN to security and began shucking shoes, cell phones etc. Pushing, pushing, pushing, we zipped through without any problems. . . no wait. . . the TSA employee motioned for us to see her. She needed to exam Maddie's purple bag. Again, I heard a page, Delta paging the Taylor party of 4. I told Amanda that Mason and I would head toward the gate (of course it was a long walk away) and meet her there. As Mason and I ran toward the gate, another employee was standing in the concourse saying: "Are you the Taylor group?" Yes, I shouted, and he waved us on. "We are waiting for the rest of our group, to come from security" I said. "We can't wait any longer, you will have to get on or wait for the next flight". What to do? How do I plea my case to these people? Judging from our experience, this was the only Delta flight in the history to actually be on time. Buying some time, I explained what had happened. Then I said something that I am not really proud of. . . "I guess next time we will fly Southwest". About that time Amanda and Maddison came running up to the gate. The Delta employee didn't even check our boarding passes, he just motioned us on board. Thankfully, the plane was not full and we had our choice of seats. I felt like everyone on board was cursing us under their breath. But I have to say, the Delta people did everything they could to make us relaxed and comfortable. (Which made me even more embarassed that I had threatened to take our measly business to SW). It took the entire 30 minute flight to Atlanta for me to settle down. And guess what caused the problem at security? Maddison's light up Twinkle Toes sneakers! They had to take everything out of her bag, swab her shoes, exray several items and repack before she could go. Our little 5 year old terrorist! Lessons learned: never fly anything but non stop with small children, avoid ever flying through Atlanta, and keep the Twinkle Toes at home! More on the trip home in a future post.

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