Back now, alive again, with a new spirit and a much larger bankroll. I won more at poker in the last 2 days than in the previous 6 months combined and I doubled the money I took to Vegas. I want to do a good bit of blathering about the poker action, but first things first.
This was my best trip to Vegas. The rest of the reports are great. I just had to burp this out. It's good to vent.
I had a bad feeling about the trip but only because I'd been warned so often. I left for the GSP Jetport at 5:00 in a cold mist and strong wind. Just after pulling into the ultra extended stay lot, the good people at American Airlines sent me a text update on the cell, "Flight Originally scheduled for 5:55 will now depart at 7:10." That would still let me make my connection to Vegas.
So I walked, with only a carry-on bag, to the main terminal and found an unusual crowd. At each counter, long lines of twisted, angry faces spitting and fuming at the poor saps in airline issued grey. Here's where karma intervened on my behalf. I stood at the back of the line at the AA counter and waited my turn, appaently the only person who found that necessary. Two business types cut right past me and heard me mumble about it. "Hey, sorry, we're in a hurry," on on them said, which clearly, the rest of the people in line at the AIRPORT couldn't claim.
Those two dopes were in line to catch the same flight to O'Hare that I'd been alerted to earlier. I told the taller one about the delay and he thanked me saying, "How do you like that, we cut line and he's still nice."
"Sothern Hospitality," I replied.
So, armed with this new information, my two new friends decided thay didn't need to wait in line at all. Then as they moved aside, ANOTHER COUPLE, this time a short middle aged woman with extremely tight curls and an extremely angry scowl, actually pushed me out of the way while her tall unhappy husband simply followed along. She said, and I think this is the unversal mantra of the selfish, "I'm in a hurry!"
I stepped aside and let the bitch have a rant. She seemed to think the snowstorm in Chicago was all caused by Larry from American. I think that was probably true, but nothing a new shampoo couldn't fix. He needed to brush his shoulders though. Several times I heard him ask the woman if there was anything he could do to help, but she didn't want help as much as she wanted to vent.
So during her rant, the other ticked agent cleared and called me to the front. I showed him my cheap Hotwire ticket and asked about the connection to Vegas. "You'll never make it," he said, "and I think your flight will be cancelled altogether." Then he smiled and added, "Let's see if we can get you to Vegas tonight."
Sure enough, he found a seat on Delta through Cincinnati that would get me to Vegas 90 minutes before the original flight from O'Hare. I took it. The woman next to me stopped screaming long enough to hear that, but to her dismay, there was only 1 seat left. Both she AND her husband could have gone if she wasn't such a bitch. The original line cutting men would be on that flight if I hadn't been nice.
So, after 3 trips between the American and Delta counters, I was booked on a 7PM flight to Cincinnati where I would catch an 8:20 to Vegas. The airline change upgraded my fare and sent me to a higher class of passenger, which subjected me to the in depth search at the airport. After careful examination, the guy from TSA found my lighter.
Upstairs I waited for that damn Delta flight and by 7:30 it hadn't arrived. In fact, there was still no attendant at the gate. At 8:00, I had one of my many conversations with my travel planning friend Ted who suggested I make another plan. I found a flight to Atlanta which was delayed an hour itself.
In Atlanta my 9:30 flight to Vegas was delayed by another 3 hours and I had to find something to do. I'll give just a few minutes to guess what I did...
...got it yet?
That's right, I went to the bar.
I'd ordered a double SoCo and a Sam Adams when a very pretty young girl asked, "Is this seat taken?" about a chair two spaces away from me at the bar. I said no, but she took the chair next to me anyway. Up close she wasn't so young and was still clutching to the haircut of a 15 year old cheerleader... how 'bout those bangs. She ordered a budweiser and a tequila, then proceeded to talk, without interuption for an hour.
"I'm from Orlando," she said, "and I'm off to Denver to meet my new boyfriend."
I'd noticed she'd shown a Massachusetts ID to the bartender, but she acted suprised when I asked her about Boston. "Never been there," she said.
"I left my mom's house this morning so I could go meet Greg, and I haven't seen him in 12 years, since my ex-husband moved in with him."
"He and my ex- are still best friends, but I talk to Greg on the phone sometimes, so now I'm moving in with him to see if that works out," she explained.
I was starting to feel the buzz, but was damn sure this would be my best bet of the trip. I had doubts about this relationship.
Minutes later, I paid my tab and struggled back to the gate. I cracked open a Scientific American and some a-hole kept reading passages aloud over my shoulder. It was my buddy Ted from G-Vegas. He was delayed on a flight back home.
At 12:45, delayed by 3 hours, I left Atlanta for G-Vegas.
INBOUND TRIP TOTALS
FLIGHTS BOOKED :
Las Vegas (delayed)
Drinks Consumed (6)
Life Stories Heard (1)
BACK HOME FROM McCARREN
I stood up from the Excalibur table at 4:00AM, up about 4 buy-ins at the time, and cabbed it back to the IP. I grabbed my bag, and a sweatshirt and said goodbye to Mr. Blood.
Ted, old friend and travel expert, called me to say my flight was overbooked, and I could probably catch something later. I had high hopes. So I caught a cab downstairs, had a long chat about income inequality with the cabbie, and waited for my jet.
The flight was full, but not overbooked, and with a strong tailwind we made it to Dallas 10 minutes early. Everything in Vegas went as planned or better, everthing else is shit.
Somehow there was still a plane parked at our gate. Somehow all other gates were full too. Somehow it never occured to the good folks at American to just wheel a ladder to our jet. I spent a full hour PARKED on the runway in Dallas and now my flight was 45 minutes late.
So when I got to my G-Vegas connection the door was already closed. There were actually 9 people from my Vegas flight hoping to connect here, and all of us were screwed. The only other direct flight was 6 hours later, and there were only 2 seats available. The surly gate attendante offered to get me home through O'Hare, but I'd had enough of THAT bag. I called the airline myself.
3 hours later I found a flight to Charlotte. It left on time. That got me on a flight to G-Vegas, that was delayed for 3 hours by mechanical trouble. I got home at 10PM.
Why I won so much money in Las Vegas.