Getting up at 3:45 wasn't bad enough but when the car came at 4:30, it was a regular Town Car and not an SUV. OK, I'm not that picky and normally I wouldn't care but when you're traveling with a 70 lb case with containing lights, a golf case that has a tripod in extension cords in it instead of golf clubs, an accessory case the size of a small doghouse, a camera bag, two suitcases and three carry-ons, it's tough to fit all that into the trunk -- even if it is a Lincoln.
We called the limo company and I told them that they screwed up for the last time and that even though we had been customers for 16 years, we're never using them again. Anyone whoknows me know that I can lose my temper easily but I am more or less forgiving. I didn't quit on them after the times when they sent a car to my son's house instead of mine and their driver took me to the wrong airport -- but this was it.
Our driver, Peter, a guy from the Czech Republic, was really helpful and busted his butt geting all our stuff into the car. He left Czechoslovakia in 1985 when it was still Communist. On the way to LAX, we talked about living during those times and he had an interesting comment. He said there are some things in America that remind him of a living under a communist regime.
Once we got to the airport and stood in the god-awful security line, I began to think that he was right. America is becoming a third world country where nothing works and there's no consistency. For example, Continental now has security lines for the Casual Traveler and the Expert Traveler. When did that happen? What does that mean?
We got into the Expert Traveler line but got stuck behind a guy who had to send his stuff through the x-ray twice because he had a can of shaving cream in his luggage. Security risk I asume.
Speaking of luggage, I hope ours will arrive in Milan with us. Our skycap was extremely helpful at curbside. He wanted to know what was in the cases. I said film equipment and that we were shooting a documentary in Italy. He asked if I could help his nephew from Bombay who is trying to find work in TV here. What could I say? The fate of my luggage was in this guy's hands. I gave him my Tonight Show card. The guy says that his nephew loves Jay Leno. We parted with him telling me to expect a call.
I'm sitting in the first class lounge enjoying a stale english muffin and coffee. Justine's bugging me to go to the gate. It's 6:20 and time to board the plane.
Well, they just made an announcement that our flight's delayed because they found a leak in the number two engine.
We have a two hour layover in Newark before catching the flight to Milan. Justine just told me that they won't know anything until 7 o'clock and that it would take two to four hours to fix the engine. We have to try to make other plans. She's talking to the Continental attendant here in the lounge.
Luckily there's a bar here. Is 6:40 am too early for Vodka?
Here comes Justine. Time for an update.
OK, we may have to move to United for a 2:40 PM flight and hub through Frankfurt. We can't wait for them to repair the engine because we'll miss our connection. We'll know more at 7:00 am.
6:40 is definitely not too early for vodka.