Brothers Ride Biddy Buggy

April 20, 2010

in Odds & Ends Stories

In 2005, my brother and I were flying America West from Salt Lake City, Utah to Ontario, California to visit my parents. Unfortunately, AWA (Now US Air) does not have non-stop flights between these two cities, and there is a stop-over in Phoenix. But their fares were reasonable, and we’ve never had a problem with them in the past.

Halfway through our flight from Salt Lake to Phoenix, an announcement was made that our connecting flight from Phoenix to Ontario had been cancelled. Terrific. When we landed in Phoenix, we were hustled over to the customer service desk, where a long line of people were waiting.

When we finally got up to the counter, we were told that they would fly us to LAX, and then they would send us by bus back to Ontario. The flight would be leaving in 10 minutes. Of COURSE that flight was clear on the other side of the terminal! The lady at the counter told us to find the nearest golf cart (I call those things Biddy Buggies because it’s usually only little old ladies who ride those things!), and have the driver shuttle us across the terminal. How embarrassing! Here we were, two young guys, in perfect health, riding on a biddy buggy! People were looking at my brother and I, giving us looks of disgust, like, “How lazy! Can’t you guys WALK?!!?” We didn’t know that we would be expected to tip the buggy driver, so that was another embarrassment, but fortunately I had a few bucks on me.

We were given no time to contact my parents and let them know our flight was cancelled and that we would be going to LAX instead of Ontario. We were quickly escorted onto the plane and took off for LAX.

My parents HATE driving to LAX. It is a nightmare getting in and out of that place, not to mention it’s a very scary place compared to Ontario, which is quiet and squeaky clean, but I think they would have rather driven out to LAX, than to be sitting at ONT, waiting over three hours, wondering where we were! It probably would have been quicker, too.

Anyway, we landed at LAX, and the gate agent told us to head directly to the baggage claim to get our bags, and then to get on a van that would be waiting to drive us to Ontario.

We no sooner got to the baggage claim when someone from transportation yelled at us, “Are you two going to Ontario? You need to get on that van RIGHT NOW!” We tried to explain we needed to get our luggage, which should be coming off the carousel any moment. The agent didn’t even listen to us. Instead, he hustled us into an office and said, “Oh, you lost your luggage? Well here, fill out this form and this one and that one…” “No, you don’t understand sir, our luggage isn’t lost, it just hasn’t come off the carousel yet.” “Well if you’ve lost your luggage, you need to fill-” “No, you’re not listening. Look, I’m going to go out there by the carousel and get my luggage. Give me 5 minutes, and if it’s not there, we’ll fill out these forms and be on our way.”

Luckily our luggage showed up, and we got on the van and headed back to Ontario. It took over 3 hours on the freeway, in rush hour traffic, to get from LAX to ONT! The driver was hilarious though! He was this really cool, hip black guy. This was during the time that the whole Michael Jackson trial was going on, and so for the entire 3 hour drive, the driver just went on and on, ranting and joking about Michael.

We finally got to Ontario, and the visit with my parents was nice. Fortunately the trip back home was uneventful.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Eutychus April 22, 2010 at 3:56 am

"really cool, hip black guy"? Heh. You bright and clean young fellas from Utah don't get out too often, do you?

Some aggravations in this story, yes, but they don't quite add up to a FFH.


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