Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sleepless in Chicago

So here I sit, several meters above the midnight tarmac at O’Hare Airport in Chicago. No, I didn’t plan to be here. Indeed, I should probably be over northern Quebec or even Greenland right now, but neither American Airlines nor I can help it.
Personally, I blame the airline’s dire need to avoid the red, but according to the captain, it is the fault of the auxiliary power system. Apparently, we were “dispatched” with said part to test mid-flight, and if all went well, we would be to continue onwards and upwards over the Atlantic Ocean. Unfortunately, the part failed, meaning that due to FAA redtape regulations, we can’t fly over water, which is pretty much a necessity when flying between the Americas and Europe.
Oh well, at least I get to add Chicago to my Facebook Cities list. Not much of a tonic for arriving home at least 2.5 hours later than planned, but it’s a start. Still, it seems that so far this year airline travel has not been kind to me. In seven flights, I’ve endured 4 mid-air medical emergencies (all on Finnair…), one missed flight and one forced landing. Things do not bode well for me and airplanes. But hey, let’s keep it in perspective. There is no gaping hole where the luggage bay was meant to be and I’m E27 richer. It just blows to be stuck on the ground, not allowed to leave the plane just to keep a struggling airline in the black.
As Palisades Tennis Center are aware, I’m committed to keeping my local businesses in operation, but if we’re calling American Airlines a local business, we may as well refer to Costco as a front yard vegetable stand. What’s more, I’m stuck in one of’s red seats for the second flight in a row. For the uninitiated, a red seat is one you should avoid at all costs. It’s not like I didn’t try. On the way over, I tried getting different seats, but my brother – bless his heart – was desperate to sit together, so we did. However, on this sector, we had the opportunity to share some quality bonding time once more, in Business Class, but the indifferent guy he is, those seats were quickly warmer the prosteriors of my Grandmother and her “Special Friend.”
Anyhow, end rant perhaps? The captain just came in over the PA and announced that the repairs had been completed and the paperwork was nearing completion, so with a smidgen of luck, we’ll pushback in 15 minutes and be on our way. So long as it doesn’t interfere with American Airline’s profit margin.

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