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Flying Adventures

Getting to Port Hardy

I made my 6:30am flight but had stuff in my hands still packing as I was trying to check in. Once I got down to the gate I opened my carry on and finished packing.

I knew that I had plenty of time between my 3 flights so that getting to the various was not a problem. The problem would be once I got into Vancouver there would only be 1-1/2 hours to go thru customs, pick up my check in bag, get on a shuttle to the next terminal and then catch my flight to Port Hardy.

I got into Vancouver and once I got out of the terminal found a transportation person who told me to go across the street to catch the shuttle. After standing there for a few minutes I asked someone else who didn’t know, asked yet another person who told me I was in the wrong area. Finally I found the right stop and found people who were heading to the same place. I stuck to them like glue!

The plane to Port Hardy was a little tiny commuter plane, like the little puddle jumpers of years ago. 1 row of seats on each side of the plane, so small one can’t stand up inside. The flight crew left the cockpit door open so I could see them flying the plane. Oh, it brought back flying memories!!!
The flight was mostly cloudy but near Port Hardy the skies cleared and I could see the road we drove so many years ago.

As I exited the plane the co-pilot asked how I liked the flight and I told him that I loved it! Love the little planes. When he asked why I told him that many years ago I was flying with a current pilot’s license. He told me to get back flying. Maybe I will someday!!

Bekki and Emilio picked me up at the airport. We made a couple of stops then went to the Bed and Breakfast place where Bekki got us a room. We thought that we’d stay for at least the night. It was a room with a bed, but really sharing a downstairs apartment. Off of the entry hall are bedrooms to the right and straight ahead and to the left a laundry then living room, dining room and kitchen.

I still had food that I’d brought and Bekki had a few things so we lit candles, opened wine that I brought, ate dinner and just enjoyed our being in Canada.

Posted by Miss Chris 14:44 Archived in Canada Tagged airport family canada vancouver bc airplane port_hardy Comments (0)

And It's Off to Work We Go

Fun and games in getting to work in Toronto, Canada

sunny 85 °F

Nothing like lots of misadventures to help jump start a trip.

On Saturday I got a call asking for me to go to Toronto to work the floods. Great! We really do need some cash; I mean who doesn’t have a ton of things needing cash? So I arranged to fly out today with a flight that would leave just later than my granddaughters as today she is flying to Belgium.
Well our flights both departed late and with just over an hour to get from one flight to the next I was very concerned. I was especially concerned for my granddaughter as she has not flown overseas alone before. I waited for her flight as long as I could and we discussed how to handle various situations in the event she would miss her connection. Then I advised again that we’d also be in touch between flights as they are similar in length for the 1st legs.

This is all well and good. We said goodbye and then I went to my gate, leaving her on her own. We sent text messages until the time we each had to turn our phone off.

When I landed in Phoenix I attempted to turn on my phone on the taxiway to see if she made her connection. No phone, it was dead as a doornail. I worked with it until I had to get off but there was nothing.

Of course by the time I got off the plane and got my carryon my next flight was already boarding. We were at the last gate in A and I had to go to the opposite end of the terminal. Running I’m frustrated that I have no time to get to my gate and that my phone is dead.

I boarded the next flight, last in the back of the plane and because I was late just put my camera bag with laptop up in the bin. Well some guy did that for me, it is stuffed full of equipment plus laptop. As we were still sitting on the tarmac I then picked up the phone and tried it again but nothing. After we were well on under way I thought that I should have put it under my seat so I could try to charge the phone, if it in fact discharged. Too late, UGH.

Again we were late arriving at the final connection; we’d gone around some thunderstorm. I started to run as my flight was starting to board according to my boarding pass. But this time I was in terminal A and had to go to F. As I was walking fast, still in A I saw a small sign to go to the shuttle for F. An employee said take the shuttle, it only takes 5 min and we would not need to go thru security again. I ran down the stairs and hopped on the shuttle just as the doors were shutting. Finally some good luck. I got to my gate just as boarding was starting.

Once in Toronto the fun was not over yet, there was a rental car to take care of. Because I was on a very limited budget to get here I put on my Visa what I thought it would take to get my car. Well in Canada it is different and they have a deposit, unlike the U.S. Anyway my Visa was short $34; I mean really? Fortunately Avis gave me their phone to call the Visa and Visa called my bank, verified funds, made a quick payment and I was about on my way. Now only if I could get the car to drive.

So Avis gave me an electric/gas car. I found the start button but the car only coasted down a slight incline stopping in the driveway. A guy getting the car next to me pushed my car back up to its spot and back to the office I went. Poor people were probably tired of me by then but came out and showed me how to start the car in gas mode. Push down on the brake and push the start button. Same order to turn it off.

I got to the hotel and was told my room had been upgraded, YES!!! A glass of wine, warm bath and I was a happy camper again.

Posted by Miss Chris 09:04 Archived in Canada Tagged travel airport driving airplane business_travel claims_adjusting toranto Comments (0)

Airport Security That Isn't So Secure

So what are these guys really checking?

I’m assuming that most of the blog readers have flown, some many times but most have been thru security on more than one occasion. So we all know how very important it is to have our shoes and limited amounts of liquids checked, oh so thoroughly!

I recently flew home on a 2-leg flight and was glad that I actually made it back. My meeting was over at noon and my flight home didn’t leave until 7pm so I was in no hurry at all.

I got to the airport about 3 hours early and actually hoped that I could catch the earlier flight so that I could pick up some Starbucks. I had the check-in email sent to my phone so that I could use it instead of the usual check-in at a kiosk or counter. Since no one was at the counter I mentioned to the representative that I’d check in at security but asked about catching the earlier flight. She said that they’d been having some problems with that system so she’d just get my boarding passes for me and that I couldn’t get the earlier flight. She asked my last name and looked in the computer, finding it quickly. She printed my boarding passes and I was on my way.

I went thru security, they checked my laptop and shoes but the woman behind me had a sparkly sweater and they were concerned about patting this woman down. Wow, now sparkles can be so dangerous you know!

So off I went to finish my Netflix I’d been watching while I waited for my flight. I thought to check my boarding pass just to verify the flight and gate before settling in. What a shock, I was on the earlier flight. I then checked the 2nd leg and saw that it was to Canada. Now I love visiting Canada but hadn’t planned to go there that night. Then I looked more closely and saw that I had boarding passes for a different person. I found that our names were basically the same but slightly different spellings.

I went to the gate desk and pointed out the error. Those boarding passes were snatched from my hands so quick and new ones printed.

Now I understand how the airline made an error but the TSA supposedly scrutinized my boarding pass and photo ID. Hum, now I’m wondering how I got thru? Did they not check? What was that person doing anyway? I mean it isn’t brain surgery that these people are doing. And if I could get thru with someone else’s boarding passes how can we be sure that they won’t give the same amount of inattention to someone who has ill intent.

Just makes you wonder what we are paying for here.

Posted by Miss Chris 18:17 Archived in USA Tagged travel airport security airplane tsa Comments (0)

Saving the Frequent Flyer Miles

Making a trip to save the Frequent Flyer miles from expiring.

So I got an email from United saying that one of our frequent flyer accounts was going to expire if not used by Jan 31st. Looking up the account found that it was belonging to my husband. Since he has nearly enough miles for a free ticket we decided that we didn’t want to lose the miles.

First I got into the United site and started looking at flights to San Francisco; we could make a quick trip up to our son’s plus see our 2 granddaughters. $260 for that. Then I looked up a flight to Albuquerque, NM and that was only $218. HUM! A flight to NM with 2 legs is less than a straight thru to SFO. Crazy but true.

I booked the flight to NM for 2 weeks from today with a 2 day stay. We will leave early Wed a.m. then return Friday evening. Booked the car after looking at the United offer went to Budget directly and got a better deal, but I am a member of that.

We were discussing hotels and what to do in NM and then started thinking about Taos, the places we want to eat of course. We remembered that we’d always wanted to stay in this historic hotel just off the main plaza in Taos so I looked it up on-line. We decided to spend a little more and have a room with a fireplace so that is booked.

Now we will just wait for a couple of weeks for our fun little getaway all because we had to save my husband’s frequent flyer miles.

Posted by Miss Chris 00:14 Archived in USA Tagged travel hotel airport new_mexico united_airlines frequent_flyer_miles Comments (0)

The People Who Keep Us Going

Those people who work for lots less but take pride in what they do

I am always impressed with people who do the cleaning, the people who do the jobs that are not high paying. Yet many of these people work hard and are clearly wanting to do a good job just because they want to.

Since I’m renting a car while here in Annapolis Avis hasn’t made it easy to keep the car. I had to extend the contract once again but forgot when I was leaving my last claim and was nearly back to the motel when I remembered. The over-the-phone computer wanted to extend the contract for $800. I was going to extend but then the computer wouldn’t take an answer so I had to talk to a real person who suggested that I go back to the airport yet one more time in order to save a bunch of money. It was nearly 6pm, bumper to bumper traffic going to Dulles. I was so upset, now it looked like an over 1 hour drive each way, I had not eaten since breakfast and had so many claims to close and to call.

I made it to Dulles and Avis after 8pm parked and went into the office. A young man who I’d seen the other two times was there but I don’t think he recognized me. I told him that I needed to extend the use of the car but the price by phone was over $800. As he worked we talked and being frustrated I told him that Avis was so difficult to work with. He finished the contract and said that my weekly rate would be $200. Well now I told him that I couldn’t complain anymore. I told him that I’d planned to write a negative report about Avis but now he proved them wrong. I promised to mention his name, a shout out to the Avis at Dulles to Dennis.

I also am referring to the people at the front desk of the Best Western here in Annapolis. I have had such a run around with motels and was so glad to have a place to plant myself for a while. The problem was that I was going to have to leave for the weekend because the motel was booked solid. I decided that I just wouldn’t worry about it.

I went to the desk and asked if there were any cancelations and the woman said “no, but she was going to make it work”. And make it work she did. I’m still planted in my room and will be until Dale gets here.

When I working away from home it is difficult enough so people who take pride in their jobs and help make that stay away so much easier.

Posted by Miss Chris 21:16 Archived in USA Tagged travel airport rental_car motel Comments (0)

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