[FoRK] TRAVELMAN -- a new low :)

Rohit Khare < rkhare at commerce.net > on > Mon Mar 6 06:32:47 PST 2006

After a fun week of SJC-ORD-BWI-LGA-JFK-FRA-NCE-FRA-ORD-SJC with several snowstorms delays (4hrs in FRA!) and, of all things, ~3hrs of "wind delay" at LGA, I got home yesterday at 9pm for this morning's SJC-SAN-SJC run for ETech (followed by a drive back to SAN this weekend for PC Forum). I checked in for my 7am RJ on AA and went to bed by 11 with a 4:40 alarm.

I woke up, grabbed whatever was done from the laundry - Smruti's had an even tougher time of it, bookending the trip to Nice with a week consulting in DEN on both ends - I called a cab and headed to San Jose in light traffic with heavy rain.

Still sleepy, the cabbie reconfirmed when my flight was and mentioned I'd be early. Preoccupied with the satisfaction of showing him how, yes, you can charge a credit card with only a pen to rub it, I got out and smugly ignored the $2/bag curbside checkin fee -- traveling light is a casualty of back-to-back travel -- so the closed counters didn't bother me.

That the escalator was broken didn't bother me, either. I grabbed the elevator and headed up to join the morning security line, which runs back out of the terminal into the parking garage (!)

Except there was no one there.

Well, except for a tech tending to all of the "out-of-sevice" e-checkin kiosks. Whom I finally asked what time it was.

"2:43 AM"

My freakin PoS blackberry was set to Eastern time - I hadn't hit save on some damn dialog box when I reset it on arrival last night.

I struggled over whether I should take the taxi home or settle in on the shabby lobby benches. There was precisely one other person in the place, stuck with a rollaboard and a hard-luck story about coping with some healthcare crisis. He shared the secret of where the lone coffee vending machine was hidden in baggage claim, and I offered him a set of earplugs for the annoying muzak racket.

When the stupid security announcement robot started blaring, though, I'd had it. I unrolled my jacket-pillow to seek out wheter there were any cabs left -- I'd reluctantly called my original dispatcher to see if the driver was still in the area, and he wasn't. In our goodbyes, the other fella muttered something about cancer, but with a firm, hearty grip, he wished me the best of luck, and I him.

-- via BlackBerry

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