Friday, November 20, 2009

A Rough Start Continues...

So even though I woke up with optimistic thoughts about our luggage that did in fact come true...the next leg of our trip was extremely tiresome. And it really shouldn’t have been...

We were scheduled to leave LAX around 11:30am Saturday morning and arrive in wonderful Los Cabos, Mexico at the local time of 2:45pm. I picked this flight for two reasons: 1) it was direct, meaning no layovers anywhere and 2) because it would get us there in time to enjoy most of the day. And with that thought...things started to go wrong.

*Side note: I'm going to tell this whole long story kinda quickly, using short and choppy sentences. I hope that's ok with you all!

Yes, our luggage made it. But it was FIVE terminals away from where we needed to problem. Rent a SmartCart and you get there in no time (especially if you’re not the one doing the pushing!).

Find the right terminal. Enter said terminal at the entrance that all the signs point to – not the first entrance that you saw. Be immediately surrounded by foreigners speaking about 30 different languages at the top of their lungs. Find nice airport attendant. Get directed by said attendant back to the first entrance that your husband tried to go in first (1/4 mile backwards) but you wouldn’t let him go in because the signs said to keep going. Locate the Mexicana counters along one wall. Wait “patiently” in line while spouse mutters encouraging words about vacation beer just to realize after 10 minutes that you’re actually at the counter for Group Sales.
Turn around and find right counter. Wait in line another 5 minutes. Hear more comments about vacation beer. Check-in using passports for the first time. Haul luggage to the luggage line to get it x-rayed and checking in. Say good-bye to luggage, crossing all fingers and toes that it gets reconnected with you in Cabo. Leave front terminal area in search of bar since the vacation beer comments are at a loud volume level by now.

Enter airport bar and have a toast. Meet people sitting around you from both Canada and Australia and chit chat with them until it’s time for you to board your flight. Trek back to your gate just to see the plane pulling AWAY from the terminal.

Have small heart attack.

Recover from heart attack when a desk clerk informs you that your flight was moved to a different gate 30 minutes earlier. Race around LAX to the right gate, luckily located within the same terminal. Glance at cell phone for time since neither one of you wears a watch. Twenty minutes to go.

Stand around in line. There is no plane, and no walkway thingy. Realize that you’ll be bused out to your plane somewhere in LAX. Glance at your phone again. Hear comments about locating another vacation beer. Squash such comments with a look.

Glance at time again. Listen to announcements, struggling to hear the ones made in English so you know that you’re in the right place. Watch time move past your departure time. Go to restroom as vacation beer catches up to you. Wonder again about the time.

Finally glimpse a bus pulling in. Miraculously score a seat on said bus since you’re one of the first people on the bus. Take a long ride out to a walkway station. Realize that the doors that you’re standing by are entrance only doors, and get crushed trying to get out of said bus. Walk up long walkway ramp to the top of the walkway that is next to an airplane.

Glance at cell phone for time again. 30 minutes late. Make small talk with people around you in line, with each person glancing at the time every minute or so. Put on your sweater as it’s chilly in the walkway station. Wait another 5 minutes and notice that your feet are starting to hurt. Look at time again, cursing the fact that only 2 minutes have passed.

Eventually get loaded onto the plane (45 minutes late). Put on seatbelt and settle in. Listen to the steward announce that there’s a problem with the tires and the plane is grounded. Turn phone power back on so you still have a watch...think to yourself that maybe it would have been smart to wear a watch just this once. Settle in with your book. And your iPod. Try to ignore the time passing slowly.

Finally, the plane pushes back from “terminal” and taxies onto the runway (an hour and a half late). Customs forms are passed out immediately, and you dig out your ONE pen that is in your purse. Taking charge of the forms, you and the nice lady next to you struggle through all of the insanely ridiculously vague questions. Settle back in with your book. Wait for lunch. Eat said lunch in less than 5 minutes, since it’s now 2 hours past lunchtime.

Arrive at airport in desperate need of a bathroom. Force yourself to hold it a little longer while you go through customs, find your luggage (YEA!) and press the red light/green light button to finish customs. Find the first restroom that you see and take turns watching the luggage while the other person uses the facilities. The person that didn’t luck out and go first does the little potty dance while waiting - that would be me. Exit the airport and immediately get swamped with salesmen.

Accidentally mistake one of the salesmen for your bus driver and get roped into a timeshare presentation the next day for some free activities while on your honeymoon. Since the man offered us a margarita for the bus drive to our resort, we accepted and took long drinks. Which immediately nearly flew out of my mouth as it was the most disgusting margarita I’d ever tasted. It wasn’t lemon-lime, but grapefruit-orange juice. Not good.

Find the right bus driver this time. Meet the group that we’re sharing the bus with and get loaded into bus. Enjoy a few relaxing miles of Mexico scenery and pleasant conversation with the bus driver. While trying to go through a toll station, hear a loud pop and lots of Mexican curses. Look up and notice that the arm of the toll road has crashed into the windshield of our bus. Wait politely while the bus driver and the toll officials haggle in a foreign language at lightening speeds over whose fault the accident is.

Finally pass through the toll just to pull over to the side of the road and wait for another bus. Turns out our bus has to stay and file the paperwork since the toll authority was accepting responsibility for the accident. Nice for him...not so nice for us as we’re the ones waiting. Again.

Arrive at our hotel finally...FOUR hours later than you were supposed to be there. Exhausted. Hot. Tired. Dirty. In the same clothes that you wore the previous day. Luckily for us, the check-in process was quick and simple and before we finished there were beverages were served. We sipped the ice cold drinks and started walking through the resort to find our room. It was nearly sunset, and a whole day had been spent trying to get here...and it was only supposed to take half a day.

It can’t get any worse, right? Since I said that the first night, I didn’t even allow that though to enter my head this time...and wouldn’t you know? The power of positive thinking finally paid off! Next up...our rooms and the views.


  1. OMG...just OMG. I thought I had bad travel karma...but wow. Girl you really needed a drink at that point! Hopefully the view and room makes up for it????

  2. OMG is right!
    What an absolute nightmare. I would have been in tears!
    I am glad that you made it there a-ok, but seriously!?

  3. I hate traveling. The getting there is the worst part. Can't wait til one day they can stick a jet backpack on us and we can fly through the air to arrive in matter of minutes :) Glad you survived...having been in Los Cabos just a year ago at an amazing 5 star resort, I am going to guess you had a phenomenal view to make up for everything :) Love how you worded the story...quick, to the point and still full of personality.