Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Travel: Amsterdam & Italy - Day 1

Monday 5/31/10
We’re off on a two week adventure to Amsterdam and Italy!
And so the journey begins! Like usual, we were up late last night finishing up our last minute preparations for this trip. Dean was in bed just after one and I followed at about 1:30am. We arranged to have a town car pick us up at 12:45 to be at the airport by 1:30. Our flight was at 3:30 – bound for Amsterdam with connections in Chicago and London.
Surprisingly, I awake before my alarm that was set for 9am. This is good because there was still a list of things to do this morning before departing. This includes giving our house a quick cleaning as it is for sale and there are a few showings while we’re away. We cleaned, packed the last second items, and were ready just in time when Marshall (the driver) arrived. We load the car and lock the house. And so the journey really begins!
While Marshall’s driving was less than impressive (he almost ran off the road twice), we got to the airport right on time. We were worried that being a holiday, the airport may be a bit busy but actually it was quite the opposite. Relieved, we went to the American Airlines check-in kiosk. Just moments after putting our flight info in, we found out the first flight was delayed and delayed to the point that it would make us miss our connecting flight. Fantastic. To the check-in counter we go with hopes there were other options. After this experience now I know why some people stand at the counter for 10-15 minutes…people in line were definitely eyeing us and likely thinking “what in the heck is taking them so long – I have a plane to catch”. Well, if you’ve ever wondered that, this is a perfect scenario. The gentleman behind the counter was very friendly and realized our concern and after literally 10 options that were ‘no good’ and several phone calls later, we found another flight…but it would mean changing airlines, getting to the other terminal, and getting through security in less than 45 minutes. All at the expense of AA of course, not ours.
We ran from the north terminal to the south where Delta is. We received some good help here too…we checked-in via the kiosk then we became “those” people that everyone loves to hate. A Delta employee opened a lane just for us to check our bags as it was unlikely that we would make the flight if she hadn’t. And of course in the middle of the rush my bad was 2 pounds overweight (50 is the limit) so I had to remove some items from my bag and toss them into my carry-on to avoid the $50 charge. Dean’s bag weighed 50 exactly. Of course.
Security was quick and painless, thank goodness. And we arrived at our gate in the nick of time…only to find out this flight was delayed too. You’ve got to be kidding me. At this point our itinerary has already changed once – we were originally going from Atlanta to Chicago to London to Amsterdam. Now we were going from Atlanta to Boston to Amsterdam.
The flight from ATL to BOS was pretty quick once we finally took off – about an hour delayed. I can rarely sleep on planes and this was no exception. Dean and I chatted and surfed the net on the in-flight wifi. We landed at 6pm and our next flight was taking off at 6:50. It was going to be close but we stayed positive about it. We were finally de-planed at 6:15 and had to RUN to the next gate which was just a few gates down from where we were. Dean ran ahead of me to let them know we were coming and thankfully he did! The last few people were boarding the plane and we were the last on board but we made it. They made last call just as we arrived. We didn’t even have time to catch our breath! And it just so happened that we had the very last seats on the plane – row 44.
This flight is 6.5 hours (less than we expected!) which was a pleasant surprise. So now we’re in real time. We are about mid-flight now as I write and Dean and I watched Invictus (great movie) and had a great dinner. He had a chicken with veggies and I had pasta. A few hours remain before we land. It will be about 8 am in Amsterdam which is 6 hours ahead of home (EST). I’m thinking I may need to try and get some sleep now because once we arrive in Amsterdam we are going to hit the ground running…

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow!!! I'm sorry you guys had to go through all of that back and forth with the airlines but I'm so glad you got it all worked and you guys are now safely in Amsterdam :) It was very lonely in the office today especially because Julia was out too so it was just ME. I really enjoyed reading about your take off and I am looking forward to reading more about your journey... Love, Erin xoxo