11 September 2009


This day started off a little out of kilter. Dear Tal got me to Augusta's Bush Field in plenty of time for me to meet my flight -- with time to spare. By 7:40 everyone scheduled to be on the 8:00 flight to Atlanta was aboard. The flight attendant had finished her recitation and had closed the door when we were told of a ground delay in Atlanta. As the minutes passed hopes of making my connection in Atlanta -- to begin with only 37 minutes -- faded. And, the seat on that connection, I had chosen it so carefully.

Passengers erupted off that little plane when the door was opened in Atlanta, hitting the corridor on Concourse C at a dead run. One look at the Arrivals/Departures monitors at the top of the jetway told me all I needed to know. My flight west had already taken off. At a help station just steps away, however, I simply waved the bar code on the boarding pass that I'd printed at home last night under the reader and out of the machine came an apology and a new boarding pass for the next flight -- only an hour to wait -- to my destination. There was time to find the gate and even a cup of coffee. And, (surprise, surprise) to meet the rest of my party, both of whom -- one originating in Columbia and the other Greenville/Spartanburg -- having also missed the flight.

But, that carefully chosen seat ... The travel agent arranging all the plans for the group of which I am a part had reserved three seats for us, together, on the 757 (which features three seats on either side of the aisle). With me in the middle. The mere thought of that for several hours made my head hurt; I didn't think I could stand it. So, when I checked in last night, I moved myself to another row where a window was available.

My seat on the new flight was a window, but, oh my. The aircraft was not a 757 but an MD88. Do check out the cabin plan. Seat 37D is, indeed, a window. Right by the port engine. Ah, the discomfort of a middle seat as opposed to temporary deafness.

So much for planning. I can't help but laugh.

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