As my earlier post indicated, I was summoned on very short notice to fly out to Kansas City to solve some technical issues. Getting a flight was relatively easy, but there was basically only one “Wanna Get Away” fare available, and since I got the plane so late…I was stuck in the C seating group (last to board).
Luckily, the plane was on time. Security at OIA was tight, and the lines were lengthy. I also took me over 35 minutes to find parking in the terminal parking garage…I was forced to park up on the roof. Back to the flight, we boarded and I was among the last to board. As I did the walk of shame, I noticed one aisle seat available, which was 17C. There were only 3 more seats available, and they were not easily accessible.
After I got my seatbelt fastened, it occurred to me that I was surrounded by babies/toddlers. In front of me (marked in red on the image), there was a father in the middle seat and 2 year olds on each side. Behind me, there was a mother in the middle seat and infant babies on the window and aisle. After we took off and achieved 10,000 feet, the babies…all four of them….started wailing. Then, another baby in 19D started screaming. This is normal, since babies have a hard time equalizing their ears.
The flight out was miserable. The guy in front of me had no control over these 2 year olds…and they were squirming and screaming. At some point, he shifted to the seat in front of me and reclined it fully, putting the seat in my face. What a rude jamoke. The infants behind me were causing a ruckus, and the woman moved to the aisle seat behind me, and kicked my seat the whole way. About midflight, the guy in 15B freaked out…and demanded to be moved (which was not possible). So then, the woman in 17A determined that the father with the 2 year olds and the mom with the infants all needed to be seated together…and she decided to enact a case of musical airline seats to get everyone switched around. This did seem to excaberate the crying babies, but I ended up getting stuck one row up, with my luggage one row back.
To make this trip worse, I did not have sufficient time to load up my iPod Touch with movies, so I had to try and listen to music over the drone and buzz of the engines. Arrival was less painful…MCI had my luggage ready by the time I made it to the luggage carousel.
I went outside and got on the rental bus. I then made it to Budget. The “Ford Taurus” or similar vehicle somehow turned into a Kia Sofia, Santia Ria, Diahria or whatever the heck it was. But it was OK.
The hotel sucked. I reviewed it here. Basically, the hotel was older, and the service was poor. The fixtures were dated and in poor repair. By day three, the toilet was non-operational.
The trip itself in terms of solving any technical issues was not so great. Support from the local staff was dismal and I really only had one partial day with which to work. Luckily, we were able to diagnose the issue relatively quickly.
The trip back was better. I upgraded to business select, which got me boarding pass A1. I opted for the first seat, Window, and sat back for the ride. For some reason, the woman in 1C was doing the pee-pee dance and seemed irritated at the world…and with a big Hmmmmpf!, she moved to 1F. Whatever. Good riddance. No one sat in the middle, and the guy next to me had his share of scotch on the rocks. At least he was quiet. But not the gaggle behind me. The guy wanted to tell his life story to everyone, at high volume, and he did not shut up for over 2 hours and 12 minutes. Ugh. I am glad to be back.