Monday, April 26, 2010

My short vacation to Richmond, VA

After an amazing weekend in Sarasota (I'll talk more about this later), I embarked my plane to JFK. Although the weather was bad in Tampa and pretty much everywhere else along the East Coast, my flight took off as scheduled. After two and half hours, the pilots informed us that our plane would be landing ahead of schedule. As someone who loves to travel but HATES to fly, I was beyond excited to be on the ground. Forty minutes later the pilots had a change of heart. A ground stop at JFK due to weather problems was preventing us from landing at the airport. Our plane circled for 30 minutes before our pilots notified us that we would perform this circling exercise one more time before we would have to be rerouted to another airport nearby so the plane could refuel. Thirty minutes later, we were on our way to Richmond, VA. Now I don't know much about Richmond, but I took the liberty of Googling what I could have done there if I hadn't spent my entire time in an airport. Apparently, Richmond is home to beautiful neighborhoods with striking architecture. Richmond is among a handful of mid-sized cities to offer a flourishing cultural community enhanced by several first-class museums and prominent universities, its own symphony, professional ballet and opera, and numerous theater companies and art galleries. While offering easy access to the ocean, mountains and Washington, D.C., Richmond features countless pastimes at home. Trendy boutiques and restaurants, numerous sports and entertainment attractions, outdoor pursuits among one of the nation's largest river park systems, and a treasure trove of historic landmarks provide fun times galore.... I'll just have to take this website's word for it because my experience in Richmond did not include any of these activities.

Once we landed, our plane had to wait in a long line of other rerouted planes to refuel. Two hours later, aka 1:30am we finally were first in line. Since the ground stop was still in order our plane found its way to a gate so we could all get up and stretch our legs. Who knew a trip from Sarasota to New York City would become close to the duration of a trans Atlantic flight. Just as things were starting to look up, our pilot, the bearer of nothing but bad news, came over the intercom once again. He advised us that he had been flying for 16 hours and that a new pilot was on his way to take over for him for the remainder of our flight. I sat as patiently as I could as I watched my iPhone's battery gradually disappear. Alas, our pilot had arrived at the airport. Just as the entire plane had a glimpse of hope, the bearer of bad news spoke again-our pilot had arrived at the airport, but unfortunately TSA had gone home. No security checkpoint for the pilot means no flight to NYC that night. Jet Blue distributed vouchers to all of the passengers so we could all rest up for our flight the next morning. After a few more hours of waiting in lines to get my voucher and then again at the Hyatt, I finally arrived in my room at 4am. By now, I could definitely be in Paris or some other European city that sounds a lot more interesting than Richmond-no offense to anyone from there, I clearly have not experienced your city in all its glory.

This morning I woke up to find that my 10am reschedule flight was delayed until 12pm or until further notice. Luckily my flight took off a little bit after 1pm and I was safe and sound in New York City by 1:30. At this point you may be thinking that I hate my airline, but quite the contrary-I am absolutely obsessed with Jet Blue. Not only did they provide me with a place to sleep, or nap rather, they also provided everyone on the plane with a voucher for the same amount as our trip on a future flight.

Obviously the circumstances of my night were unfortunate, but I managed to land safely and I cannot wait to book my new flight with Jet Blue. I have no idea where I'll travel to, but I'm pretty sure it's safe to say that it won't be Richmond, VA.

More on my trip to Sarasota later.

1 comment:

  1. LOL - glad to see that you kept your sense of humor intact while going through your travel ordeal. OX