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Tuesday, January 07, 2003  

So we’re arriving at our hotel in Austin at about 4:30 tomorrow afternoon. If we were driving, we’d have to leave at about 10:30 tonight to get there at the same time. Of course, that’s only of we never stop for gas or bathroom breaks (and the person who invents a car that runs on urine will change the world), but it also doesn’t take into account the way I drive. Obviously we’re flying, so we’re leaving at a different time. 8:30 tonight, to be precise.

Why? It’s a long story. And you know what that means.

Here’s what happened. Last summer, Trash went on a small shopping spree at Travelocity. When she got the tickets for Austin, we found out that it would be much cheaper if we flew out of Rochester, Minnesota for some reason. Rochester is about an hour and a half away from our house, and it doesn’t have the biggest airport. So we’ll have to change planes in Minneapolis—

Wait, what?

When we reserved the tickets, we of course called the airline to see if we could just get on the plane in Minneapolis. They said we could skip the Rochester part, but then they wouldn’t let us on the plane in Minneapolis either. Security reasons.

So, okay. Fine. Hey, you know how much we hate early-early-morning flights? We should probably stop taking them, don’t you think? Guess what time our flight out of Rochester is? Five. Thirty. A.



So if we wanted to, we could leave at two this morning and still get there in plenty of time. Instead, our friend Bitter is driving us down to Rochester so we can “spend” the “night” there before our flight. We’ll drive an hour and a half, maybe get four hours of sleep, and our alarm will go off at 3:00 so we can schlep to the airport to make our five-thirty a.m. departure time so we can make our connecting flight at nine-fifteen. From Minneapolis.

Yes, you read that right. We’re driving an hour and a half and spending the night in another city so we can endure a THREE-HOUR LAYOVER IN AN AIRPORT ELEVEN MILES FROM OUR HOUSE.

Us: Are you sure we can’t just get on the plane in Minneapolis?

The Airline: Yep.

Us: Damn.

Okay, so since we’re leaving Minneapolis at 9:15, our wheels should hit the runway at Austin Bergstrom at around noonish, right? Wrong. Apparently, months after we reserved the tickets,the airline has decided that nonstop service from Minneapolis to Austin would be just too convenient. So at noonish, our wheels will be on the ground in Memphis and we will have just begun making a dent in a four-hour layover there. Maybe we’ll have just enough time to visit Graceland. For like twenty minutes.

Finally, we’ll catch a flight to Austin that’ll have us at the gate at around 3:30 p.m. Figure another hour to disembark, get our rental car, and check into the hotel, and we’re looking at twenty hours of travel time. All to go a distance of three hours as the 747 flies. When it doesn’t have its cockpit jammed up its tail vent clear up to the forward galley, that is.

It’s bad enough that we’re basically running a leg of The Amazing Race here (somewhere, Phil Keoghan is Kiwiing, “teams must now kill a total of seven hours in the airports of at least two different time zones”). What makes it worse is the fact that Trash still hasn’t fully recovered from the grippe she’s been battling. We’re probably going to spend twenty hours getting to Austin, and six days recovering from the journey.

The way back should be easier, though. We have a nonstop from Austin back to Minneapolis. After that, we’re supposed to change planes and fly back to Rochester before we go home. It’s a round trip, after all.

We’ll just see if we’re in the mood to do that when we come back next week.

posted by M. Giant 3:15 PM 0 comments


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