Okay, so last we left off, I was at the airport at 11pm, with a flight schedule for 4p THE NEXT DAY.
There are no hotels at the Charlotte Airport. You have to take a shuttle or a taxi to get to the nearest one. After rebooking my flight and staring at the grim sight before me, a makeshift campsite at gate C, I made my way to the main terminal and sat on a bench. I called the number on the hotel voucher only to hear an automated message tell me all hotels are booked. Okay, NOT FINE.
I’m pretty wore out at this point. I sat cursing myself, wishing I had stayed in Tennessee where I had Ags, versus being stuck at an airport, in a town where I know NO ONE. Next to me on the bench was a lady, probably in her 50s, with a Vera Bradley Super Tote in Night Owl:
She was busy flipping through her GPS, finding hotels near the airport, and calling them up. I thought, “that’s a genius use of a GPS!” when she turns to me, notices my Vera Bradley Carnaby bag, and asks, “Do you have a hotel room?”
I sigh and say, “no ma’am,” (apparently I’ve picked up Southern sayings only after being there for 3 days, haha) and lament that I’m stuck at the airport till 4p the next day. She pauses and says, “Do you want to split one?”
SERIOUSLY?! This stranger, out the blue, offers to help me out?! She didn’t know me from Adam(haha, that song) and she just offers to help me! Can you imagine?! Now, I am typically the most reserved person you will ever meet. I am soooo apprehensive about meeting people and even worse about asking/accepting help even from people I know! I like to think of myself as an island and need NO ONE. I am MORE than self sufficient. Normally, I would have sulked and wallowed in my self pity and probably slept in the airport and suffered for my pride.But here was this lady, probably someone’s mom, offering to help me, just because we were two people stranded alone at the airport.
I was speechless for a second before I jumped on the opportunity and said “Yes! Yes please! If you don’t mind, that’d be more than great! Thanks!”
She eventually found a hotel only a few miles away with a suite with a king size bed and a pull out sofa. She booked it and at 2am, we went downstairs to the shuttle/taxi area and call the hotel to ask for a shuttle pick up (which she was told on the phone ran 24hrs) Yeah…not so much. The hotel told her she probably spoke to someone in Florida at a call center and the Charlotte chain’s shuttle only ran from 6am-11pm. ARGH! Dee (my newfound companion) was livid, but we went out to take our chance on a taxi. Neither of us had much experiences with cabs and were more than apprehensive and a little unnerved at the numerous cab companies. (Apparently a few hours earlier, the scene outside the airport was chaos! People were fighting each other to get a taxi, so Dee told me. Luckily I missed it.) Before we could decide, a driver jumps out of his cab, asks us where we’re heading and offers to take us. We look at one another and shrug and off we went. The roads were a mess!
Once at the hotel, the front desk guy says he can’t find our reservation and there’s nothing he can do. I wanted to punch him in the face. It’s 2:30 in the freakin’ morning and there was no tone of sympathy in his voice. Poor Dee. She was on the verge of tears. She said, “But I just booked it! On the phone!” and she starts to rattle off the confirmation number. The front desk dweeb perks up and says, “Wait…that sounds like our confirmation code?” and he finally finds the reservation. It appears the phone operator put Dee’s last name as her first name. Front Desk dweeb all of a sudden seems more than accommodating. Jackass.
And so it went, my first day of being stuck in Charlotte. But don’t worry, there’s a part three, Day 2, in store. Sounds like a Shakespearean play. Oh, Billy. Maybe I should make this a comedy and someone should get married at the end, 😛
P.S. I did call my parents and Ale and let them know the situation and that I was going to share a room with a complete stranger but they had the deets so should I disappear, haha, there was some sort of communication.
Have you ever been stuck at the airport? Or have you ever had to rely on the kindness of strangers to get by?