Wednesday, May 2, 2012

From San Diego to Las Vegas to Home

I had plans for the last half day in San Diego. Sunday brunch, a return to Balboa Park for the Spreckels Organ concert, maybe one last drive along the coast. But my sickness made us sleep late and take our time getting ready. We scrapped our plans and instead hit the road around noon. It should have been a 5.5 hour trip, but there was a traffic accident on the highway crossing the desert and we sat in a huge traffic jam, moving 0-5 MPH for an hour and twenty minutes. Yeesh. Not fun when you are sick!

Of course, as soon as we hit the end of the traffic jam and everything opened up from 2 lanes to 5 again, the road crew whizzed by, picking up the cones and ending the accident clean up. So it took us 7 hours to get back to Las Vegas.

Mom had a nice, light dinner of salad and baked chicken for us. I went to bed early. Monday morning was our last vacation day before flying home.

We decided that we had to go to The Cracked Egg! The Cracked Egg is a breakfast place in Las Vegas and we love their omelets. Plus, my parents had saved us a 2 for 1 entree coupon.

It was a little crazy to go from breezy, partly cloudy, low to mid 60's in San Diego to the dry, sunny, scorching 99 degree weather in Vegas! Wow! When we went outside to go to The Cracked Egg we were overwhelmed by the heat blast!

We go to the The Cracked Egg on Cheyenne Ave. We got there around 12:30 pm and it wasn't very busy. Here's what we ate:
SP's Garden Patch Omelet - spinach, broccoli, mushrooms, tomatoes, and cheese. He chose hash browns for his side. The omelets are 3 egg omelets.

SP's side of coffee cake. That day, it was cinnamon apple flavor.

My Cracked Croissant - 2 eggs, scrambled, bacon, cheddar. You can order your eggs any style, or get sausage or ham, and any flavor of cheese. I chose hash browns for my side.

Huge sandwich. It seemed like more than 2 eggs!
As usual, we enjoyed our food. SP ate everything, I ate about 3/4 of mine.

We spent the rest of the day with mom and dad. We went for a ride in dad's spiffy new car. Helped mom do our laundry. Ordered pizza & wings for dinner. We even watched Dancing With the Stars with mom!

And then Tuesday morning, we flew home, departing from an airport with some of the crabbiest, surliest, least helpful employees we've ever encountered in an airport. SP was through security and trying to juggle 2 travel bags, his backpack, my purse, his coat, 2 pairs of shoes, and repack his insulin before the lazy screening woman ever let me through for my pat down.

Not to mention we encountered some of the stupidest fliers ever - like the guy who tried to send our luggage/purse/shoes through the baggage screening machine well before we were able to go through the people security machine because he was just... well, I don't know what his deal was. He was just standing around? Being helpful? People watching? Thought he was security? I have no idea why he wasn't walking through since his stuff had already gone through, but did he miss the memo that you need to make sure no one touches/has access to your bags? We were not happy with him.

Or the idiot lady with a stroller who thought that because the airline people took me down first to board the plane (wheelchair) that meant she could just go down, too. That was a nice scene.

Not to mention flying on what we now consider one of the least helpful, least competent airlines ever. Our flights were a mix of United operated and USAirways operated flights, but the tickets were purchased through just one of those airlines and that idiot airline never 'released' my ticket to the other airline, so neither of us could print our boarding passes at home the day before we departed Pittsburgh. After multiple phone calls and nearly 3 hours on the phone with them and assurances that their tech guys were on it, we ended up being forced to stand in line at the airport to see an employee to check in and get our boarding passes. We couldn't even use the self check machines at the airport. At least by the time we were leaving Las Vegas, they had fixed it and we were able to print our boarding passes from my dad's computer.

The same airline had a Las Vegas employee who tagged my wheelchair incorrectly for the gate check and it could have been lost. That same airline had counters at gates in 2 airports that were vacant 30 minutes before a flight so you couldn't get any assistance. They didn't bother reading the reservation list and got angry when they realized 5 minutes before boarding time that there was a wheelchair person on the flight, even though we had been careful to spell it all out on the reservation form. In fact, one employee came looking for us because he saw it on their flight list (but not until it was time to board) while the counter employee we were talking to got all mad and when she called for wheelchair assistance she whined that we had 'just showed up' even though we had been at the gate for nearly an hour but not seen an employee at the counter until 5 minutes before boarding.

One of their employees let us go down to get on the plane and I was waving the boarding passes at her but she didn't remember she had to scan them until we were almost on the plane. The baggage compartments on the planes coming home were too small so we ended up having to gate check our luggage through to Pittsburgh. I made SP go back out and stand over them to make sure they tagged it correctly. I wasn't taking any chances after they tagged my wheelchair incorrectly!

We traveled through Denver, a much larger airport than I expected and thank goodness we landed and departed in the same concourse. It's a nice airport. We bought an avocado-bacon-lettuce-tomato on whole wheat sandwich to share while we waited 2 hours for our next flight.

The airline employees in Denver were just as non-existent and unhelpful and had just as bad an 'I can't be bothered to do my job' attitude as the airline employees in Las Vegas.

But the airport employees were great - 2 or 3 guys saw us and asked if we needed assistance.

And finally, a bit after 11 pm, we landed in Pittsburgh, claimed our bag, and and found Googer, who drove us home.

I should say that of the 2 airlines involved in this trip, I have flown on one of them for all my flights the last 10-15 years and the experience has always been good. The other airline was a first time airline for me, and after this experience, I hope this was the only time I have to deal with them. We have vowed to avoid the incompetent airline in the future, even paying a bit more if necessary to avoid them.

They were that bad, that incompetent, that rude, that unhelpful in Las Vegas and in Denver.


Not that our hotel bed was uncomfortable. It was a very good hotel bed. And not that my mom's guest bed is uncomfortable. It's fine and I slept in it for the 8 months that I lived in Las Vegas. But my goodness did it feel good to finally collapse in our own bed around 1 am after nearly 2 weeks away!

So our vacation is over, but I've enjoyed reliving it through blogging, and I'm looking forward to getting the photos on our digital frame so that whenever we feel a bit 'ugh' we can go gaze at the photos from a fantastic trip to San Diego and remember how relaxing and fun it was. Cracked Egg (Cheyenne) on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. That pretty much sounds like a travel nightmare... on that note, welcome back!