TGIF, This Week was a Journey

May 8th, 2009 by Nick Jacobs Leave a reply »

So, here’s the story: I got to the airport my normal two hours early because I’m obsessed about being on time. Worked on my computer, grabbed a salad, got on the plane, talked to the flight attendant, buckled up, and just as we were pulling out of the gate, all of the power went off. We lost the air conditioning, and the flight attendant and I looked at each other and said, “That’s not good.”

As it turned out, the young pilot on this commuter jet forgot to turn on the auxiliary power and when the ground crew unplugged the plane, everything went down; all of the computers and the air conditioning. In fact, the entire plane was roasting, and it took the ground crew over an hour to restore the power. Seven people got off of the plane because they missed their connecting flights to places like Germany and Kuwait; one poor guy was AWOL


We took off in plenty of time to make my flight to Pittsburgh, but when we landed in Dulles we had to sit at the gate for another 20 minutes for the absent ground crew. Then we waited twenty more minutes for the bus/room that takes you to the correct part of the terminal for the next flight. Of course, I missed my flight by about 30 minutes, walked about two more miles, stood in lines for another hour, finally got a ticket for the first flight out this morning. Then had to stand in another line to get a hotel room. Walked for another three or four miles through Dulles, got lost, stood in the rain for about 20 minutes, got to the Holiday Inn compliments of the airline, was placed in a handicapped, smoking room . . . (they must have recognized me), and slept for about three hours. I guess that makes me a real road warrior!

I’m back at the gate waiting for my flight and today’s excitement.

(Could this be a possible air travel alternative in our future?)




  1. You should have called. Basil Bernstein and I were close by meeting all day and we would have come get you. He spent the morning in the legislature about coverage for children who are mentally ill. That is another whole story.

    I’ll catch up with you this week, by phone when John is in town. We are going to have some real fun.

    Welcome to the world of consulting travel. You learn to carry phone numbers in your cell phone to check out options with local friends. I really lost your phone number. I hope to find it tomorrow when I clean out boxes from moving east.

  2. Mike says:

    Your day in some ways is akin to being seen in a busy emergency department or coming in off the streets for some outpatient testing. Lines, waiting, delays, cancellations, and of course the unintended innocuous error which results in additional delays.

    The end result is customer frustration, inconveniences, and a lack of faith in the system – aviation or health care.

  3. Rita Schwab says:

    Love the concept of the Aeroscraft, although it might be disconcerting from the ground if something that big was floating over at just 8,000 feet.

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