Johnnie to the rescue: a harrowing tale at Logan Airport

What do you do when it’s an hour’s drive to the airport and your flight leaves in an hour? Pray your flight is delayed.

This morning, we set our alarms for 3:35 a.m. thinking we’d leave at 4 and arrive at the airport a solid hour before our 6:05 a.m. departure. Logan Airport in Boston couldn’t be that busy so early on a Sunday morning. An hour seemed like plenty of time to check luggage and drag our sorry butts through security.

But we were prepared for delays as a Northeaster with five inches of rain was pounding New York and New England.

As I dressed, I looked at the FIOS settop box and saw it was 4:59 a.m. The adrenalin hit me in an instant: we had not set our clocks forward an hour to account daylight savings time. The FIOS settop box had automatically sprung forward.

We hurriedly dressed and threw our luggage into the car.

As we drove through the wind and gloom, Ann checked with JetBlue a couple of times to learn if the flight was on time. Of course, it was. No way we would make it. We’d have to rebook and hang in the airport until our new flight left.

That wouldn’t be so hard.

We left the car at off-site parking and sped to the terminal. Whoops…in my haste to leave, I forgot my golf clubs.

Yeah right, Logan was deserted. NOT! Terminal C was jammed with long lines of travelers whose flights the day before were canceled due to the bad weather. I asked a JeBlue agent managing the lines if flight 449 to Fort Launderale had left and she guessed yes. After all, it was 6 a.m. and the door to plane was sure to be shut if it was on time.

The agent said get at the end of the line and rebook. “The line’s around the corner,” she said.

Around the corner! It stretched 200 yards into the narrow hallway leading to Terminal B. That’s after looping around in serpentine fashion in front of the ticket counters. My heart sank. Who knows how long it would be before we left? And we’d incur dumbass fees for rebooking the a flight we’d missed.

Our abilibi should JetBlue have any sympathy on our poor souls was that a flooded street delayed our departure when in truth, it was our addled minds. We’re not above groveling and pleading old age, decrepitude and whatever other nonsense we could trump up.

Actually, we were so absorbed in the Georgetown West Virginia basketball game for The Big East championship last night, we forgot about springing forward an hour. Our team Georgetown (our son goes there) lost by two in a nailbiter. It was an omen. We were coming up two points short on this flight.

Johnnie to the rescue.

“I’m going to go back to the counter to ask if 449 has really left,” I told Ann. I found another line agent. “I’ve been calling out the flight numbers,” she said defensely. I posed the simple question again and she asked if we had just gotten to the airport. I sheepingly answered in the affirmative.

She instructed me to get into a short line. I still had no idea if the plane had left.

First, I got into a line that wasn’t a line. Then, I  got into the correct line with about 4-5 parties ahead of me. Meanwhile, I called Ann who was still at the end of the longest line I have ever seen and said come to the counter. She trudged back with all the luggage.

Meanwhile, I grabbed the first line agent, who called the gate to see if we could still get on. She claimed she never heard us ask about flight 449 when we first entered the terminal. Ann now tells me I asked about the “6:05 a.m. to Fort Lauderdale” and not about 449.

In five minutes, we stood before a smiling counter agent who told us we’d make the original flight. A wave of relief came over us. We flew through security which was empty (the multitudes were getting rebooked at JetBlue), ran to an empty gate C36 and boarded.

All’s well that ends well. The first agent helped make it happen, but had we stood in that endless line, we would have needlessly missed our flight.

The flight didn’t leave for another 30 minutes as more bags and most assuredly ours were put on board.   We’re two hours into the flight now approaching Fort Lauderdale, our destination. Smooth, too, although bumpy on takeoff as the plane ascended to get above the still raging storm in Boston. Luck was with us this day.

Oh, don’t forget set your clocks forward an hour.

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2 comments On Johnnie to the rescue: a harrowing tale at Logan Airport

  • Glad to see you caught your flight, I guess I should have told you to set your clocks ahead.

  • Coincidently, I was driving my son back to Logan for an 8 AM flight on–you guessed it–Jet Blue. He insisted on taking a shower when I told him it was going to be tight. No worries said the wise college sophomore, it’s always dead on Sundays.

    Wrong! Your scenario played out exactly the same for him two hours later. As I left logan and wished him good luck, I wasn’t optimistic. 2 minutes later my phone rings. “I have my boarding pass but the line to check bags is 2 hours long!” he tells me. “Go to the front and tell them your plight” I reply.

    Long story short, they let him cut the line and he makes the flight. Security was NO issue. Baggage check-a whole different matter. Go figure.

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