Our American Airlines flight to Dallas and on to Los Angeles was scheduled for 6:45 this morning, or so we thought. As I double checked the flight details, to my surprise, the flight was actually scheduled to depart at 6:25 AM.
I quickly checked in over my iPhone and glanced at the time. It was 5:52 AM. We grabbed our bags and scurried to the Fort Smith Regional Airport, which was only 3 minutes from our home. We arrived at the Airport and found that the front counter had already closed down, even though a first boarding call had not been called. I asked a few TSA representatives if we could still board and told them I had checked in electronically. They seemed to want to help, and, if we had not had bags to check and a printed out boarding pass, we would be able to board. We had bags, and no boarding pass.
One TSA agent looked at the other and then said, “You’ve missed your flight.” It took a few minutes for that reality to sink in. We had missed our flight! What would that mean? The next flight out would be at 10:35 AM – 4 1/2 hours later! They offered to get us on the next plane for $75 per ticket or $150 for Monica and myself. I thought about my options. We could rent a car and drive to Dallas! I went and spoke with the rental car reps and found two strikes – One: No cars were available until after 12:00 noon, and the rental, for an economy car, would be between $159.99 and $224.00. Yikes!
So, as I returned to the American Airlines counter, I heard the announcement – The Delta flight had run into problems and all passengers would have to be re-booked on a later flight. American Airlines, before I could get back to purchase our tickets, offered the seats they offered us to any passengers of Delta. Ugh! So, at that point, we were on the dreaded … STAND BY …!
We waited and prayed that American would somehow find us seats on the 10:35 flight. It was not to be. So, we waited for the next flight, a flight that would leave at 2:50 PM – another wait of over FOUR HOURS! So, that’s a total of 8 hours at the Fort Smith Airport! Praise God that Cheryl Blatt and Madeline came and picked us up for lunch!
Well, I am writing this from the cabin of a Boeing 767, aisle 29, seat B, to be exact, and my lovely bride sleeping quietly next to me. Yes.
We were let out of purgatory and are now heading towards California. We must have looked pitiful to the nice gentleman at the counter. When I walked up to pay for the flight change, he already had a ticket in hand and said that our seats were reserved! We didn’t have to pay! He said the flight in Dallas would be a stand by as well, but when we arrived at the counter and gave them our stand-by tickets, they already had seats for us! God is so good!
Well, we’ll see what else The Lord has for us as we continue on this journey. I’ll let you know – We’re on the great adventure!