Reservation Mix-Up Poem by Deanna Samuels

Reservation Mix-Up

Checking in at any airline reservation
shouldn't be too much of a hassle.
OK, a line-up to get to the booking-in assistant,
queueing up to go through security and
half undressing in front of a thousand staring eyes;
quite a nightmare without any other frustrations!
After that, should be fairly plain sailing - but no!

Listen to this tale of mix-up to keep Gary and I apart
would tug on anybody's sympathetic heart.

Earlier that morning, the Uber taxi arrived on time,
gave a swift, perfect ride to Pearson Airport, Terminal 3.
Enlighted, feeling good, excited but relaxed,
looked for the West Jet checking-in kiosks.
Found, but strange layout, two rows opposite each other
with passenger line-up in between not facing either row.
Difficult to see which clerk was waving for next passenger,
especially through six rows or so of luggage and people.
Anyway, our turn finally came after keeping constant look out.
Assistant asked for identification, driver licenses produced.
Some typing up on computer, Gary got his boarding pass,
put straight in shirt top pocket, so details were not seen.
Me next, same procedure and was handed mine.
Now, check-in baggage was next to be dealt with.
More tapping, label produced, clerk puts around case handle.
Receipt handed over and ‘please bring round to the side'.
Did as instructed, placed case on stand and saw it disappear.
Now for Security line-up, lots of people but got through that.
Wow! Safely through those first two barriers,
i.e. - checking-in and Security.
Not having had opportunity to look at boarding pass
espied the courtesy ride who, on looking at pass,
advised we needed to go to Gate C32, quite a distance,
said they would take us there, rode to the gate.
The courtesy ride driver also said that our flight was at 2.55pm,
40 minutes later than the original time we booked.
Plenty of time, two and a half hours to sit and relax, have a coffee.
This brought relaxation before flight was called.
Finally had a chance to check both our boarding slips,
alarmed that Gary was booked on the 2.15pm, me the 2.50pm!
Mine even had a different name to me - what is going on?
Both the flight numbers different, seats rows apart,
nothing made sense. Organized panic set in!
If flight was at 2.15pm then, only an hour and half before flight called.
Enquired from an airline departure gate where to find West Jet staff.
Advised near Security in the B Section, we were way back in C.
Desperation calls for desperate action, no other way to go!
Hailed down the courtesy ride buggy returning to Section B.
Dropped off at B, espied the West Jet customer assistance.
Quickly got a young lady's attention, related our sad story -
Been put on different flights! How could that be? And our baggage -
not sure which flight being loaded, even to where directed!
Well, this lovely young assistant worked such miracles.
A long phone call and lots of tapping on computer.
She advised that flights have been corrected, all is now in order.
Issued me corrected flight ticket on 2.15pm, seating together.
But, what about our checked-in luggage?
That too, she said, had been processed with wrong name
and due to be loaded on the 2.50pm flight.
Assistant again, worked her miracle, asking description of case -
dark red, hard outer, we quickly said.
Advised case located, would be loaded onto the 2.15pm.
Thanked her very much for such good assistance.
With due faith, hoped that that would be ‘the case'!
proceeded to the boarding gate seating in Section B.
This time, would you believe, it was just a few feet away!
Now, boarding for the 2.15pm was less than 45 minutes.
Sat down utterly exhausted, finally relaxed at last!
Purchased light refreshments, waited for flight to be called.
Called it was, boarded, plane took off and landed in Calgary.
Completely efficient and untoward, deplaned.

Next step - forward to the carrousel with bated breath!
Sign indicated Toronto flight 663 was at No.2.
Glanced number we were standing by - No.10!
Looked down the long, long hallway -
so far away, carrousel No.2 could not be seen.
Walked briskly along the lengthy corridor,
stopping once to ask if going right way!
Eureka, at last, carrousel No.2!
Other passengers were waiting from our plane - good sign,
flight baggage had not yet reached the carrousel.
With doubt - but hope in mind that our case would arrive.
The carrousel started up, luggage went round, all picked up
but ours - nowhere to be seen, had not arrived.
Once again, reported facts to a West Jet representative.
Lorna, a very kindly person took over our problem.
Checked on computer and finally concluded -
luggage never made it to the 2.15pm flight,
probably loaded on the 2.50pm after all
and until the plane landed in Calgary,
and all baggage placed on carrousel in about an hour,
would not be known whether our luggage had made it.
Our ride was already waiting, was not able to wait an hour.
Don't worry, Lorna said, she will arrange to have it delivered.
Took hotel address where staying in Canmore,
advised that if case arrived, would be driven over late evening.
Eureka! A few hours later after booking into hotel,
had text - luggage found on carrousel - driver on his way - great!
Now no need to run out late at night to get toothpaste supply!
Waited with bated breath - will it really be?
Goodness, true to Lorna's promise - 10pm and call on phone,
driver arrived and was at the hotel front door.
Swiftly went down to lobby, driver was there with case in hand.
With profuse thanks and just reward to that valiant knight,
brought case up, opened, emptied contents, put everything away.
Suddenly, it was calm, as though nothing had happened
during the previous hours of distress and tribulation in between.

Written while at The Rocky Mountains - 27th October 2022

Deanna Samuels

Deanna Samuels

London, England
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