Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Tour of Europe - Stage 1 - Denver to UK... to Dublin?

I probably should have known when my bike case didn't fit in the back of my planned transport to the airport that it was going to be a rough trip. Thankfully, a certain someone came to my rescue, as he has a knack for doing, and drove me in. Although it was the end of the work day, around 5:15pm when we left Boulder, there was definitely more traffic than usual. So, thanks to some quick thinking and smart navigating, we got around most of it. I still made it to Denver International Airport with a good 2 hours to spare. I didn't think I would need it, but I was really wrong.

As I tried to check in, I was faced with quite a problem. Not having a printer, I had not printed out my itinerary. As a result, United couldn't confirm that I was actually traveling to Dublin and wouldn't check my bags through. Its humorous because I called United before I booked the connecting flight to make sure that it would work and they told me it would be no problem. I had various members of my family forwarding emails from one email account to another, trying to get the email to appear on my blackberry, but of course there was some problem with my hotmail account and it didn't work. So, instead of missing my flight to London, I settled for collecting my bags at Heathrow. I was pretty certain I would end up missing my connection as a result.

I was right. I landed in London, got sent the wrong way through Customs, had to back track through the longest line ever, collect my bags, and go upstairs to check in. By this time it was well past boarding and even departure time. I had indeed missed my flight. Now, most of the time when you miss your flight they will just put you standby on another but not BMI. I had to buy another ticket, in Business class at that, in order to secure a seat. The best part about it is that the flight was not 1 or 2 but 3 flights later because the others had been sold out.

So now, I am sitting in the Business lounge, waiting... hoping... praying... I make this first flight as a standby. After paying 233 pounds for this ticket I certainly hope I get on. If not, I am prepared, I have running clothes/shoes and swim gear with me so I am going to go find the hotel that is attached to the airport here (where I know there is a fitness center) and go do a little workout. If nothing more than to blow off a bit of steam.

United will certainly be hearing from me. This is a total and complete disaster. Let's just hope this is the end of my troubles on this trip. Certainly not the way I had hoped to start out this 5 week tour.


Anonymous said...

You can take the Underground to the one before Heathrow, get off and go for a quick run, no need to check in a hotel. Heathrow terminals are long. I bet you are in either Terminal 1, 2 or 3. It takes 10 min to walk from one to the other.

Michelle said...

Yuck. That doesn't sound like fun. I guess things will just improve from here.