Sunday, February 27, 2011

Getting to New Zealand...eventually.

The journey from Portland to New Zealand was a learning experience. Getting from Los Angeles to Fiji was a fucking nightmare. My flight into LA was delayed, causing me to miss my flight. Normally this wouldn’t pose as an issue, however, there’s a loophole in the airlines’ contract that if there’s a weather delay they don’t have to reimburse you or put you on another flight. I ran across this fucking airport to catch this flight with my heavy backpack. Sweating balls and 5 minutes after check-in closure they still don’t let me in. Looking to book me on the next-day flight, I’m slapped with a $580 fee. Tears are uncontrollably streaming down my cheeks by this point and I’m like someone punched me in the stomach. I work my ass off to save for this trip and because of a stupid airline clause that money is gone is seconds. After begging and pleading to both airlines and speaking to management my ticket status stayed concrete. The only bit of luck I did have was when my friends Jamie and Janice rescued me from the airport that evening. Pay the money or stay in Los Angeles forever. My soul died a little bit with each stroke of the pen signing that hefty receipt the next day.

Eventually the time came to board the plane the next evening. After I take my seat I begin to bawl. I let it out. It just happened and continued for nearly ten minutes. It finally lets up when a stewardess hands me a children's coloring book and smiles. Thinking this was the end of my troubles, I take a deep breath and relax, trying not to concentrate on the amount of money I just flushed down the shitter. Little did I know I was sitting in the middle of this Samoan family whose daughters’ feet smelled like rotting garbage. To top it off they had a crying child and the 400 pound father sat behind me, hindering me from reclining my seat for this eleven hour flight. When we finally landed in Nadi, Fiji where I was connecting to Auckland, I figured I had nothing else to worry about. This wasn't the case and I had to go through yet another baggage check ordeal that took two hours. I’m not exaggerating whatsoever. Boarding the plane to Auckland I was sure something bad was going to happen, but we landed and I survived.

Moral of the story: Get travel insurance when buying cheap flights overseas.

I will never make that mistake again.

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