Saturday, July 3, 2010

Crazy Start

The Plan: Girls preform in their annual big dance
show. Leave right after the show and head to the
airport to catch a red eye flight to New York for
Heather's wedding. Sounds easy enough right?

What happened: After a week of madness
including 3 kids baseball, my finals at BYU,
Grandmommy visiting, dance rehearsals, dress
making until 4 in the morning, and me helping
with the photography for the entire studio
everyday, the day to leave finally came. I spent
the entire day packing, because even though I
had been making preparations for a long time,
the actual packing didn't happen until the day
we were going to leave.

We had the van packed and ready to head to the
airport right after the last dance. The first show
of the night ran a little slow, and caused the next
show to run a little late too. Paris was right at
the beginning, so I had her changed and ready for
travel by intermission, but Evey's (who had signed
a contract to be in these shows) last dance wasn't
until the 3rd from the last (just our luck!!) We had
planned to leave the show by 9:30 which is when it
was scheduled to end. Evey finished her dance at 10
which still gave us time to get to our 11:35 flight.
We rushed out not even finishing the show and Evey
not dancing the finale, and got on the highway to the
airport, a 35 minute trip.

Not 10 minutes on the road we hit traffic. I started
freaking, but Jon kept his cool and kept my freak-out
to a minimum. The traffic cleared and we got back up
to speed... for about a mile then hit huge traffic. Barely
crawling on the freeway. By 11 we knew we wouldn't
make the flight. So Jon called his parents (1am their
time on the night before their daughters wedding!)
and told them we weren't going to make the flight.
Evey starts crying (poor girl has had a super busy week
and it's late) but thankfully the others are sleeping since
it is way past bed time. I called the airline to check on
the flight. After Jon has already hung up with his parents,
the automated system tells me the flight will be leaving
at 1am. A huge sigh of relief!!

Jon calls his parents back to tell them the news. But
I decide to talk to a person, because it seems too good
to be true! I get an agent and she tells me the flight is
on time and our options; for canceling $100 a seat,
forfeiting completely, or rescheduling for $100 a seat
plus the difference in airfare. Sickening!! I wanted to
throw up! Not only would we miss the wedding, we
are going to have to fork out another 1000 dollars to
even get out to New York ($100x5 seats, plus $98
each seat difference in airfare, ugh) The lady had to
wait on the line while we made a decision. But we
only had minutes to make it because once the flight
left the tickets were forfeit. We decided to cancel the
flight there, have 1oo dollars per ticket charged and
the rest of the money spent on that leg of the trip put
as a Jetblue credit for when we decide what is the best
day to go out.
Done...we sit in traffic for another hour before we even
come to an exit to turn around and go home, then sit in
traffic on the way back. When we pulled back up to the
house and started loading kids in, Paris and Lex were so
confused as to why we were back home. They had been
counting down, months, weeks, days, and hours, and now
they weren't getting on the plane they had been so excited
for. Seriously heart breaking!!

There was traffic because they decided to take the 4 lane
highway down to 1 on a Friday night. There has been
construction, but nothing like this. We think there might
have been some other problem that we didn't even come
to that caused the highway to be at a stand still like that.
A total fluke!

We decide that night that we are going to pay the extra
money to go the next night. I get online to make the
purchase and see that the tickets for the next night have
doubled from what the lady told us over the phone. I call
and am told that if prices change, it is at midnight
mountain time. We were driving... So to try to keep costs
lower we decide that taking the flight on Sunday night is
the best. We purchase the tickets so the prices don't go up again.

The next morning we wake up and take Paris to a 9am
t-ball game, one of a few she would have missed. That's
good right? My mom (who spent the whole night awake
trying to figure out how to help us get there quick and
with out as much cost) calls the airline and spends hours
trying to get them to help us out a little bit. There is some
sort of "flat tire" rule on other airlines about unforseen
events that cause you to miss your flight. Jetblue doesn't
use that rule. She is told that we could fly standby on
Saturday night (5 seats!!) But if we pay another $150 he will
go ahead an just book the flight for us. She is told the flight
isn't very full so our standby chances look good. We decide
to go ahead and try it.

We start wondering about the connecting flight and our
luggage (including 3 car seats) Mom calls them again and
spends another few hours on the phone ( it takes a while
to get a person and then to get a supervisor and then tell
the whole story) At one point I call and spend a few hours
on the phone. We plan to leave the house at 7:30 to fly
standby on the 11:35 pm flight.

At about 4 Jon decides he is going to check what time
the flight the night before actually left, because I
thought it was so weird that the lady would tell us
that the automated system is unreliable. Anyway, we
find out that the flight didn't leave until 2 am. We
could have made it and made at least the reception.
Now we have a bargaining chip. Jon calls and is told
they made a mistake and they will refund the extra
money we spent and reserve our seats on the flight
at no extra charge for that night instead of standby.

However, this whole process takes even more hours
on the phone. And like all important phone
conversations that we wait on hold forever for
...they get disconnected. It takes another hour or so
to get a new person and he find the girl that is
working our stuff. They find each other and we are
told she will call us back when it is all resolved,
they are having problems getting us on the new
flight. We decide it's okay to leave at 8:30 and
take all back roads to the airport. We end up
leaving without the return call. On the way they
thankfully call back and everything is fixed we are
booked on the flight but don't have seats yet, that
will get worked out at the airport. The lady makes
sure we are on our way just in case. She said she had
a colleague stuck in the traffic the day before too.

We made it to the airport AND got seats all together.

This was Paris and Lex's first time on a plane. They
were pretty excited. What am I talking about, Evey was
excited too, she doesn't really remember the last time.

Getting sleepy!

Jon sat with Lex and Evey in the row in front of Paris and
Winter and I and another lady. The kids had fun finding
something to watch on their tvs and waiting for their drinks
and snacks before falling asleep for the night. I however
didn't get much sleep, trying to hold Winter so she would
stay asleep and not bump the lady next to me, who was
filling a little more than her own seat. But everyone did great
on the flight, no crying from Wynn at all!
Paris and Evey liked their complementary sleep kit
which had a sleep mask and ear plugs.

Sunrise over New York City. Oh how I wish we could
have taken a little detour in to the city, I miss it!

We had a hour and a half lay over at JFK where we ate
and had a little Fathers Day celebration. We had put Jon's
presents in our carry-on.

When we made it to Jon's parents house, we got to see
family for about 15 minutes before everyone headed home.
It was sad, Jon's brother left and they didn't get to be
together at all, and we only got to see the bride and groom
for a split second later in the day, when I was a zombie
sleeping on the floor. I felt so bad, but the whole week came
crashing down on me as I was able sit on the couch and relax
a little. Jon and the kids went sailing with Grandpa while Wynn
and I took a nap.

1 Pennies for your thoughts:

Drea said...

Oh my gosh! How stressful! I was getting all apprehensive just reading about it! Sorry it was such a mess. =(