We met our shuttle outside at 5:15 a.m. (not fun), and began our long journey to LAX. Again, we didn’t know it at the time, but this was going to be the most stressful experience we have had yet in our travels. You would think that leaving that early would allow us enough time to catch an 8:15 a.m. flight. Unfortunately, we were taking the same shuttle (remember “Super Shuttle” from the last post?). We had to stop 4-5 times on the way to the airport, waiting for slow people to come out of their homes (again, not hotels, but homes). Our driver was too lazy to leave the vehicle to knock on anyone’s door, which meant we had to wait for 10 minutes sometimes, which, when you are waiting to catch a flight is very unnerving. It was also rush hour in L.A. at this time, and the traffic on the highway was brutal. We were stopped before we even got to the airport. This is when I start to panic. Our estimated time of arrival at the airport was supposed to be 6:30, but we did not get there until just after 7. You would think that the driver/shuttle company knows the traffic at this time, and would have planned accordingly to pick us up sooner, especially with a lazy driver who wouldn’t get out of his car to get passengers on board quicker!
When we finally got dropped off and went inside, we were SHOCKED at the line up for the baggage drop at the Delta counters. There must have been 100-200 people waiting! By this time I had printed our boarding passes, so I could see that our flight was boarding in just 50 minutes!! Of course, I started to think the worst – we are going to miss our plane because of that stupid shuttle company. A lady in the line heard me and suggested that I go outside and try the curb-side drop off. We really had no other option, because if we would have waited in this line, we weren’t going to make our flight. We went outside and thankfully there were only about 10 people in the baggage drop line, but with only one ticket agent, it still took another 10+ minutes. Every minute felt like an hour, and I was freaking out! I heard the girl in front of us talking to the couple in front of her, who let her go in front of them. I took the opportunity to say “I think we are on the same flight, and I am freaking out”. The nice couple from somewhere in Europe, let us go in front of them to save a few minutes. We thanked them SO much! At some point we realized that this was a special line (which explains why it was so short), so we were worried we might be turned away. Luckily, the man working was in a giving mood because as soon as I went up to the counter, I started by saying “we have 20 minutes to catch our flight, will we make it?” He said that he could get our bags on the plane no problem, but that we needed to rush if we wanted to make it. We left our bags on the curb, and started to walk/run to security.
With 20 minutes to boarding we thought we might be OK until we turned the corner and arrived at the back of the LONG line at the security. I knew it this moment it was over. We were going to miss our plane. This was easily another 30 minute line, possibly longer. Well, someone up above must have been listening to me because right at that exact moment, a guardian angel dressed like a TSA agent came out of a random room right next to me. I didn’t even hesitate, I walked right up to him and said “excuse me, we have to board in 15 minutes, are we going to miss our flight?” He asked what gate we were at. We told him we were at gate 68, which happened to be the farthest gate away from the security check point (we were screwed if he didn’t help us). He asked who I was travelling with (I said my husband), and he told me to come with him, and that he would take us up to the front. WHAT?!!! Holy crap, I couldn’t believe it. This never happens. All of these hundreds of people and we are going to the FRONT of the line?! I thanked my lucky stars and this TSA man, and even though I was still stressing, I felt we had a chance to catch the flight. We went through the security within 5 minutes or arriving, and then we had to walk/run another 5-10 to our gate.
When it was all said and done, we had just enough time to grab some much needed breakfast before boarding our flight. The flight was actually boarding when we arrived. This was definitely the closest I have ever come to missing a flight, and we would have missed it if it weren’t for a random woman telling us to go outside and a TSA agent who was in a good mood and in the right place at the right time. Talk about a stressful morning! We boarded our Delta flight (sorry no picture, no time!) and we enjoyed another wonderful flight in upgraded seats (this time having to pay about $125 US each, which was a huge difference to Air Canada!) We had similar seats for this price, exit row with nobody in front of us. We were in row 12 right behind 1st Class. We were jealous that their seats folded down into beds, but hey, we got more leg room! It was a very comfortable 6 hour flight, after another 1 hour delay due to maintenance issues. We would soon be landing in Honolulu….