They always say if everything goes right there is no real story to tell. Our experience could have been we got on the plane, Got onto our connecting flight with a ton of leg room that we paid for, and were taken to our hotel in a timely fashion so we could enjoy our 3 day tour of the Golden Triangle. That was not the case...not at all...holy guacamole I wish I could say it was even close.
So Charlie and I did check into our flight with ease and we made it to Newark, now it was 45 minutes delayed in flight but not nearly delayed enough to miss our second flight. In fact we had time to enjoy Giant meatballs and Calamari before boarding the long leg of our journey. With ease we boarded and sat in our exit row with triple leg room and space to breath. Well there we sat... and we sat... and then we sat some more. The plane had a mechanical issue and they were trying to fix the system, I believe it was to get the in flight entertainment working. I had books and an iPad... screw it we don't need TVs... but for 3 hours we sat while they tried to fix the in flight entertainment. Finally they locked the doors and were preparing the cabin for take off!! Only moments after the announcement all the flight attendants disappeared. Well this cant be good I thought...aaaand it wasn't. The captain crackled over the intercom ahhhh,,, weeeell ..... we didn't get our paperwork approved in time soooo now the flight crew is timed out.. soooo,,, aaahhhh you are going to have to get off the plane and customer service will try to get you on another flight. Well shit. We gathered our things and booked it to Gate 105 for assistance.
Luckily we got to the customer service desk before the rest of the plane figured out where to go but this was only a help for a little bit. Some Cultures don't really understand the concept of a line, which is essentially, first come first served and be patient. We saw so many people get angry and yelling at the people at the customer service desk but seriously what is the point, they didn't break the plane. Before we knew it people were just walking to the front and crowding the desks, so Charlie and I had to be aggressive if we were going to get out of that mess soon. It was already approaching midnight and the flight was supposed to take off at 950. Once we battled through the mass of wheelchairs and line hoppers to a representative things went amazing...or so we thought... She was super helpful. She gave us food vouchers, a hotel voucher and a taxi voucher. We changed airlines to get us flying to India the next day. She even booked us first class tickets for having to cancel our tour and hotel that we were going to use when we got to India. We left the airport disappointed but feeling good to be traveling in style the following day. Charlie and I crashed hard in the hotel and took full advantage of our late checkout.
The next morning we woke and took a shuttle back to the airport. We had lunch and made our way to the gate. We timidly walked down the Lufthansa 1st class passenger isle to check in, I mean we were told we had first class tickets. A couple people in the business class line starred at us with clear judgment all over there faces. We didn't need to hear what they were say we could feel the disdain of "how could these two dirt bags be in this line?" They didn't even try to hide that saw us as scum of the earth. Well feeling already embarrassed we walked up to the desk and handed the man our transfer vouchers. He looked up our names and very audibly stated "you are not first class you are in economy." I responded "we were told we had first class seats on this flight, we upgraded." he retorted "No, you are economy and need to go to the end of that line or get out of line and call united to have it fixed." well that blows.... As I turned the couple that were hard core judging just looked with the smirks of "I knew they couldn't be in that line." We were so embarrassed we didn't even bother calling United to have our Plus upgrades at least transferred, I just called them to have it refunded. Which they did promptly but hell that was a blow to our egos just a bit. So we took the walk of shame behind the 50 or so people that were already waiting in the steerage line.
So we get our tickets, the lady at the counter felt bad so we got an isle all to ourselves, to try and compensate. Completely not a surprise at this point, both of our bags got searched in security, and all we could do was laugh.
As we sat to wait to board the giant double decker, I went through my pack to find my sketchbook and doodle a little....only to find in our rush to get off the canceled flight I left my moleskine in the side pocket on the previous plane... epic fail. That old girl was half full of drawings and stories... My name and address are in it and we will see if she finds its way home. In a ditch effort Charlie found a $2 drawing pad to cheer me up and indeed the childish cover made me smile. The last 24 hours has been pretty entertaining and now I am in the air headed to Frankfurt for a layover followed by another flight... I wonder what the next 24 hours will bring... knock on wood...