Okay, so I am not writing this post from the moderately warmer NC air. Unlucky enough for me, I am still stuck in Salem. Should this count as a retraction from my last post? Lol. As it turns out, yesterday was quite the story for me and Dave. Actually, it is really more of a rant so bear with me....
We were scheduled to take Continental Airlines to Charlotte in the afternoon, connecting in Newark. Even though it stopped snowing on Monday morning, Newark didn't have its snow removing act together and only managed to have one out of its two large runways operational come Tuesday morning. Bad news bears for us since it ended up causing the first leg of our trip to be cancelled. I found this news out at 8am and tried to call the number that was provided me via the cancellation email. However, when I called the number all I received was an automated message that said "Due to the weather in the Northeast, we are experiencing unusually high call volume and are unable to take your call. Please check continental.com for more information. Goodbye". Now, I might have been a more understanding patron if I got this message a few times, but I pretty much lost my cool after hearing it for 6 straight hours. I mean, do they even have ANYONE attempting to answer calls?! Still, it wouldn't have been that bad if I could access my itinerary online like they told me I would be able to do, but nope that was rendered not an option as well. Every time I would try to enter my confirmation number on their website it glitched up and brought me back to the entry page. Thus, thank you very much Continental for making it impossible to even talk to anyone at all.
I tried their partner airline (and soon to be merging with) United and got someone within 5 minutes. I told her my predicament and she recommended that I try going down to the airport because at least that way I would be guaranteed to talk to someone face-to-face. Ugh. By the way, she also told me that United themselves could not get in contact with Continental either! What the h*ll was going on with them!?
Fast forward to Dave and I schlepping our bags on the bus from Salem to Logan airport only to be greeted by the longest line known to man at the Continental check-in desk. Mind you it was about 5x as long as any other airline's line (probably because they made it impossible to speak to anyone on the phone or through the internet). By the time we were done with that mess, we were left with only one option...getting rebooked on the earliest next date which happened to be Friday (New Years Eve). Since we are supposed to be in Atlantic City on Friday, it made no sense to do that. We had to cancel our flights and take the refund.
On our way home on the commuter rail, we decided that we couldn't miss Christmas with Dave's family. We would throw our already packed bags in my car and just drive the 14 hours to the Charlotte area. This would mean driving through the night but, hey, we're young and we can handle it. After arming ourselves with road snacks, waters, sodas and a couple 5-hour energy drinks, we hit the road. However, as soon as we hit the highway and I accelerated to 50+ mph, my car's wheel and front end started violently shaking. Not cool! My car isn't exactly old and it was FINE the other day before the snow storm. The only thing Dave and I could think of is that there was a lot of snow and ice tucked away in the wheel well that we couldn't really see after we pulled over. Need I remind you of the conditions my poor car was subjected to?
On a brighter note, after pulling my car into the garage over night and letting it dethaw -- it is running perfectly today. I'm thankful there wasn't actually a mechanical issue here but rather a meteorological issue. We are also still heading to Atlantic City for NYE, but now we're just arriving via Acela.
For those of you that wanted some insights into the NC area, you'll have to wait until our next trip. We are tentatively thinking that we'll make it out there in early February for Dave's mom's birthday. Needless to say, weather permitting. However, please still stay tuned for details of our trip to Atlantic City. I'm sure there will be lots of debauchery to detail. Oh, and I promised my friend Curt that I would post the picture of our hostess from last year at Mohegan (since it failed to make my last post). I wonder if we'll see a repeat of this look this year in AC....