Monday, April 7, 2008

Missed Connection, Airbus, Dead Batteries

Quite a few travails since I jumped aboard the airport shuttle on Saturday afternoon and motored away from the annual convention. JetBlue, whose services I'd been gushing about all week, suffered scheduling backups all day Saturday, which meant the JFK-bound flight set to part New Orleans at 6:10 p.m. would not leave until something like 10:10 p.m. The delay inevitably carried forward; the connecting flight from JFK to Syracuse was long gone by the time we offloaded at 1:15 a.m. Nevertheless, I did catch some of the Final Four while in the sky, since JetBlue boasts in-flight satellite TV. Of course, I happened to be sitting in a row where the armrest remotes were haywire--the audio levels would not adjust, so when I plugged in headphones, the sound pumped out at full volume. Rather than fill cabin with game noise, I unplugged and watched KU have its way with UNC silently.

JetBlue generously put up the few of us who'd missed connections in the regal JFK Best Western (I think it doubles as a Days Inn; that's what the sign on the other side of the building said, anyway). To get to the Best Western, you must take the "Air Bus." And to find the Air Bus, you must follow in succession somewhere between 30-40 signs that point you in all directions, up stairways and down ramps, until, eventually, there's the Air Bus. There were so many Air Bus signs between the JetBlue Customer Care desk and the boarding platform, we started to imagine a scenario in which the directional signs were, in fact, the Air Bus itself--a stylishly renamed and, thus, masked, variation of "Walk your butt to the hotel." And Sunday morning, little more than four hours after the day's dust had settled, everyone went back to JFK to complete their trips. I arrived home just twelve hours later than expected--noon instead of midnight.

I thought my travel woes were behind me.

They were not.

This morning I went to the garage to start the Element (which worked perfectly well when I got groceries Sunday afternoon). It wouldn't start. Check engine light. Check battery light. Ah, but we have recently (and cheaply) acquired another car, a teenager's dream jalopy. Went to the house, grabbed the keys, back to the car, tried to start it. Dead battery. That's two vehicles for getting Ph. to school on time; two dead batteries. Thus, he walked (and almost certainly arrived late). There were other dead batteries to speak of on Monday morning, too, though none were as inconveniencing as having both cars out of commission at the same time. At 5:30 a.m., my cell phone started chirping that it was low on juice; a couple of hours later, while I typed a couple of email responses, the AAAs keeping this wireless keyboard in action powered their final volts.

What of it? Well, it's a week that can only get better. As for the cause, I am beginning to believe that my own post-conference exhaustion is infecting any of the electronic devices I encounter.

Bookmark and Share Posted by at April 7, 2008 2:30 PM to Travelog