A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Airport
I realized recently that I may not have fully connected with my readership in one particular way-in showing much of a human side. Well, at least from the perspective of showing my self as fallible and capable of mistakes. But that should all change…
In the last day or so, I was charged $120 extra for my car rental, spent 8 hours in airports, lost my American Express credit card, and became convinced that I left my laptop at the security checkpoint, AFTER my plane taxied out from the gate. And in spite of it all, I have not just maintained sanity, I have how fortunate and blessed I have been. It could have been a whole heck of a lot worse.
My biggest gaffe was with my rental car. Long story short, don’t pull a Bryce, and make sure to actually read the rental return policies. And I did return it to a different location than I picked it up, yet there were some sneaky rate changes. I will investigate more, since plan to dispute the charges once they show up on my card.
Also, re-fueling the vehicle before I returned it triggered a series of events.
I know people that have been robbed at gunpoint pumping gas at night, so I always watch my back and generally avoid close proximity to anyone. It may also mean that I leave my wallet and my car and place my credit card in my pocket. And objects left in my pocket at times have been known to fall out….
Anyway, I checked in-for the first time this morning, and things seemed to go flawlessly. I took advantage of the Sky Priority Line, from beginning to end it took me about a minute. I got to security and placed my wallet in my carry-on, and took out my ID when I realized my credit card was missing. Not just any card. That lovely American Express Platinum card that grants me the supreme privilege of visiting Delta Sky Clubs.
Frantically, I walked back to the desk where I had just checked in. I asked if I could retrieve my bag to get something out of it. Fortunately, I still had an hour and a half before take-off, and soon was able to retrieve it at baggage claim. Thank goodness for Sky Priority!
I immediately ripped it open and scavenged for the shorts I wore yesterday. No sign. I ravaged through other pockets and compartments, but to my horror, no sign of said card. I remembered the infamous pocket incident and headed over to the rental return area. I inquired and all the vehicles had been moved through. Drat.
A funny moment occurred when a lady walked into the airport near me, and saw me searching through my suitcase and exclaimed “I hope I don’t have to go through that!” In the heat of the moment, it provided me with a bit of a chuckle.
I headed as a last resort to the rental car office, where an unconcerned supervisor had been slightly rude to me the night before, and inquired about the credit card. They asked what type it was, and I was informed it had just been moved to a safe. They went back to retrieve it, asked for my I, which was re-assuring, and returned with my abandoned card. Fortunately for me, one of their managers had noticed it outside and picked it up.
Then the real scare came when I didn’t remember putting my laptop back in my bag after going through security. My bag was in an overhead big, so it was quite a tense few moments to wait as we took off before I could check about it. Computer check. Phfeww.
Yet I kept thinking on my trip, especially today about both how blessed and fortunate I am. I am very blessed to be wealthy enough to travel and do fun things like run around Tampa for a few days, even if things don’t always go as planned. And even if I missed out on being able to use a Sky Club, I still had not one but 2 confirmed upgrades to make things nice.
And I am fortunate. Often things went better for than I might have expected. I am sometimes directionally challenged, and even with the GPS on my phone being faulty at times, I still managed to find my way around in a new town with relative ease.
And things could have been worse. Irony of ironies, despite the return location change causing some more headaches for me, if I had returned it downtown I would have not had enough time to retrieve my credit card. And despite my trance-like state, I still managed to lug my computer with me.
I guess the moral of the story is that it always pays to be early when traveling. I showed up at the airport 2 hours early, and if I had been a bit later arriving, I wouldn’t have had the time to run the airport obstacle course.
While my faith is very important to me, I’ll try to not to get to religious in saying that the man upstairs must be watching over me. I guess that is the best type of trip protection one can ask for!