…to airlines everywhere: what does the word ‘reservation’ mean in your language?
If you have , say, twenty available seats on an aircraft, you can be sure tiny avionic gnomes aren’t going to sneak down the gangplank and install more while you load the baggage…so stop selling 21 seats on the flight.
I sat in the Calgary airport waiting for the third leg of the flight home and the nice people at the gate told me the flight was over-sold and asked if I would mind waiting for the next one…which may be in three hours, or it may be in eight hours. I agreed to wait, ’cause you never know if the overbook was due to some kind of personal tragedy and I’d like to think somehow that someone would do the same for me. (This is how my brain works – I know you’re surprised – I also like to think that people WANT to pay their bills, nobody really likes tofu, and someday I will understand my family. I know it’s fantasy, but it keeps me going.)
The plane loaded, I called SR to let him know I’d be home, you know, whenever, and I curled up under the big screen tvs with Stuart Maclean’s new Vinyl Cafe book.
And that’s when they started paging Mr. Sudu. I had been bumped, but they were holding the plane for some guy who had checked in and then didn’t bother showing up at the gate for boarding. Fifteen minutes of constant paging and they offered me the seat. I meandered through the tunnel, boarded the plane, did up my seatbelt and called SR to let him know I made the original flight…but wait. Is that the attendant from the gate? Coming after me? Tracking me to my seat? Asking me to give it up again…the mysterious Mr. Sudu had been watching the SK/Calgary game in the bar and was now available to board.
Wait…what? Hells to the no. He had his chance. The only personal tragedy there would be if he was a Stampeders* fan.
*I can’t believe it either – I just referenced the Western Conference and gave props to ‘Rider Nation’, but come on people, I have to live here…I’m just trying to assimilate. Don’t judge.
So an hour late, with a grumpy minister harumphing beside me and a screaming toddler behind, I was winging my way back to SR and the Wondercat.
Home again, tired, hungry, and a bit worn…I had a wonderful trip. Oh, there’ll be more about it – like those horrid vacation slides of old – but not until I’ve shaken the dust from my travel cloak and slept the sleep of the damned.