Friday, January 12, 2007

"I hope your luck changes."

Things have not gone according to plan.

I'm writing you from London. Forest Hill to be exact. I'm enjoying some coffee, checking email, and constantly redialing American Airlines to see if they found my luggage. You can see where this story is going.

Everything was going according to plan at first. My flight over the Atlantic seemed routine, I even got some sleep on the plane until I woke up and thought, "Hmm. I'm feeling rather nauseous." Yeah, it was food poisoning and I spent half the flight vomiting in the lavatory. First time in my life I've ever used an air sickness bag. To make matters worse, I vomited on myself during the landing because of the turbulence and, well, it's not exactly like I could leap up during the landing to use the lav.

To make matters even worse, in addition to feeling like death, my connecting flight to Amsterdam was canceled due to high winds. Really high winds. Wendy and I then spent a long time in line trying to make alternate flying plans. Never mind that I had to bolt out of line periodically to go vomit some more. After a while we finally, or so we thought, got on a later British Airways flight.

I then took a nap in the terminal and thankfully stopped vomiting, but still felt nauseous. By one pm UK time (we had been in Heathrow since 9 am and I had been vomiting since 5 am thereabouts) it was time to get on our connecting flight. Oh but wait. That piece of paper in our hands that customer service gave us really wasn't a boarding pass and we couldn't get on the flight, especially since it was completely booked. Wendy looked like she was going to strangle someone.

As we went back in line to make new flight plans, I figured I would cut my losses since I was planning to come back to London the next day and spending less than 24 hours in Amsterdam seemed silly. I dialed a few numbers on the pay phone before reaching Fals, my former roommate now living in London. I begged to stay with her and she thankfully and enthusiastically agreed. Okay, I'm sorted, I thought. I then canceled my connecting flight while Wendy booked a 4 pm flight to Amsterdam. Things were looking up. No longer vomiting, but exhausted as hell, I bid Wendy goodbye and set about trying to locate my luggage.

Since nothing about this trip has been easy, it must come as no surprise that I spent the next two hours or so trying to track down my luggage and making the awful trip between Terminal 4 and the arrivals/departures area of Terminal 3. British Airways said they didn't have my luggage. "Have you filed a claim?" they asked. "What?" I said. They sent my back to American Airlines, the carrier that got me over the Atlantic in the first place. AA said they didn't have my luggage -- BA did. I then put in the paperwork and noted that probably four bazillion other people were trying to track down their luggage too.

The sympathetic woman at AA told me just to go to my friends house and keep trying the number to the luggage people. And that I did. So here I am at Fals's place and have been trying the AA number since I got here. It's been busy and I'm seriously considering going all the way back to Heathrow today to just see if I can track down my bag.

At least I've taken a shower, although I'm still wearing the same clothes. I'll probably have to go shopping for new clothes today as thoroughly worn jeans and a sweater will not cut it at the wedding I'm supposed to be at tomorrow.

Please send me all your good luck.

3 comments:

EnnuiHerself said...

Please don't die. Especially not in England.

dorothy snarker said...

Good God, that’s a lot of terrible luck. And I thought I had terrible travel luck (evidence: an unused ticket stub for my return flight to California dated Set. 11, 2001). Now you really need the strong Amsterdam, uhh, coffee. Best wishes for the rest of your trip.

H said...

Oh god, that's horrible. Probably one of my worst nightmares, what with all that food poisoning vomiting on a PLANE. Keee-rist. So sorry about all this for you and I hope things look brighter for you real soon.