One of the bad habits I have is to start, but not finish, certain things – and unfortunately it tends to be writing projects more often than not. Cleaning out my “Things to Blog & Post” folder, I came across the summary of my third day in New York, the day I came home (day one was already posted). It’s mildly amusing because it wasn’t a great experience, so I share for your general amusement. 😉
From Airport to Hotel: When I booked my car with Carmel a couple of weeks ago, they said that if my flight was leaving at 7:50 am (it seems to be the only direct flight back to Calgary), I should be picked up at 5 am. I figure these people know their business better than I do, so I said sure and mentally prepared myself to wake up at 4 am. When the time came (the morning I’m writing most of this) I dragged my sorry self out of bed at 4 am, had a shower, and made it down to the lobby for 5 am. This time it was a blue town car that picked me up, not a blue mini –van. I would have preferred to have mini-van guy pick up though – the blue town car experience ended up being pretty unpleasant. The car’s signal light made a loud squawking sound whenever it was turned on, which was frequently. Right, left, didn’t matter – squawk, screech, squawk. The driver drove incredibly slow as well. I couldn’t tell if he was doing the speed limit or not, but regardless, every other car on the road passed him. Some cars honked because he was holding up traffic in some places by going so slow. I had to open the window because his body odour was making me nauseous. When we arrived at the airport he asked me to help him read the terminal signs to find Air Canada. I thought it as a bit strange he didn’t know which terminal I’d be leaving from, but ok, I was happy to help. I don’t think he could read English: he was braking hard and not hitting the gas until I told him it wasn’t my gate, even for the gates with signs that only had two airlines listed. We made it to my gate in 26 minutes from the hotel pickup.
From Check-in to Gate: After finally figuring out that there was no Air Canada counter, and that I was really flying on United, I used their automated check-in service. It was about 500% faster than the Air Canada system (why am I not surprised?). I had my boarding pass in about 90 seconds, and 30 seconds of that was me trying to figure out how to use the passport scanner. I went through security, and once again my bag was opened for a search. The security guy told me that I should take out my camera next time and put it on the scanner separately, it’s what was triggering the inspection. Good to know for next time! I made it to my gate quickly after that, and it was 5:46 am. I was the only person in that section of the terminal – my flight didn’t leave for another 2 hours. Damn. Could have slept some more. Damn.