Preparing to shoot a few segments of Big Jon in 5 for BEER2WHISKEY in our upstairs studio at Barley's Taproom in downtown Greenville. That's owner Josh Beebe preparing for his closeup.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Delta: Once Again Violating Its Contract With Me

Delta has violated its contract with me once again.

You know, that contract that says if I pay my money, show up at the airport an hour early as instructed and I am ready to board, they will get me where I'm going safely and on time. The operative words are "on time."

Here's the problem as the plane's captain just explained it to at least 100 frustrated passengers: The plane that made the flight in last night isn't an MD88, which is the type of aircraft usually making the flight back to Atlanta. It was a last-minute substitution for the MD88 plane that was having a "maintenance issue."

So what? you ask. That was my question as well.

Well, here's the issue. The fuel trucks Delta uses at the Greenville-Spartanburg Airport are equipped with fuel lines that fit the fuel-filler opening on the type aircraft Delta, in all its wisdom, sent in here last night.

The Delta personnel here had to call maintenance central in Atlanta to have them call the maintenance guy asleep at his post at GSP to come look at it. All of that wasted about 30 minutes. Apparently Gus, Goober or Gomer is eyeballing the problem as I write this. I have no confidence that this flight won't be canceled.

If it's just delayed an hour or so, I'm fine. I always try to build in at least a 90 minute layover in Atlanta when I actually fly out of Greenville rather than slogging over to Atlanta and flying directly out of there. These flights are rarely on time and I've had more than one canceled out from under me.

A delay of more than 60 minutes or so today will probably mean I'll have to take a later connecting flight. I've already been on the phone to Delta reservations getting myself backed up on an Austin flight that leaves 2 hours after the one I should be on.

If this flight, though, is canceled. I'm pretty much out of luck. Most of the planes making the milk run between Greenville and Atlanta are small regional jets that only hold 30 or so people. I can't get backed up on a flight out of Greenville until early this afternoon. In that case, I won't see Austin until sometime later tonight.

Now my issue is whether to move forward with this trip or abort. It's a Kia event and I don't want to pull the plug, but I also don't want to spend 12 hours making a four-hour trip.

Maintenance has just reported that they think it's a stuck flap and can be fixed. I haven't seen anyone running around with a roll of duct tape, so I'm not optimistic.

I'll let you know how it turns out.

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