Friday, July 6, 2007

We Finally Made It!

Oh. My. God. We had a nightmare experience with our Virgin Atlantic Flight from JFK to London, Heathrow. It all started out so good too. Everyone is super nice to us because we have a baby. When we arrived at JFK, the check-in line was super long but we got let in the first class area to check in. It was a breeze up until we got to the gate and found out that our 7:50 p.m. flight was delayed one hour. No Problem - its just an hour. One hour turned into 3 hours and then we were told that our flight was cancelled due to major mechanical problems on the plane. We were told to go down to baggage claim pick up our luggage, make our way up to ticketing to find a new flight the following day, and they would accomodate us in an airport hotel. I was on the verge of crying - just the thought of having to lug 6 large suitcases, a pack 'n' play, car seat, 3 carry-ons, and a sleeping baby in a stroller around was making me panic - just a little. Andy told me he would go down to baggage claim with Oliver and sent me upstairs to get us a new flight before the crowd. When I got up there the ticketing agent told me that our flight was no longer cancelled and we need to return to the gate. I ran downstairs to find Andy and relay the new information. We had to go through security again and wake Oliver up to put the stroller through while taking off our shoes, belts, etc. Luckily he fell asleep again as soon as we put him back in his stroller, just so we can wake him up again to board the plane. He was soooo not happy about that. But he's a good little sleeper and fell asleep again as soon as we were in the air. We finally took off at 12:30 a.m. We were going to be seriously late for our connecting flight to Rome.
At the gate they made us check the car seat because they would not allow it on board. I called about this before hand and made sure that we could bring it on. They put it in the computer and everything. They said it was ok. Apparently not.
Arriving at Heathrow, the stroller came off the plane and was waiting for us but not the car seat. Problem. It wasn't checked all the way to Rome, only Heathrow. I told someone about this right away and they said they would take care of it and have it sent to Rome. Uh huh. Riiiight.
Next, we had to go try to get on the next Alitalia flight to Rome. This meant going to a different terminal, going out through security, then customs (Oliver got his first stamp in his passport, Yay!), and finding the Alitalia ticket desk. This took a long time. The people at Alitalia were very accomodating and very nice. They put us on standby for the next flight and found our luggage and made sure that it would be on that flight with us. We had to go back in through security (fourth time, if you're counting) and our bags were thoroughly checked and they made me taste the baby food in my back pack. Fun.
We made it on to the flight - we were finally on our way to Rome. Oliver even got his own baby size seat - only on Alitalia!
All of our luggage made it except the car seat. What a surprise! We hope it shows up.
The apartment we are staying in is very nice. We haven't seen much of Rome yet. All 3 of us have been sleeping - catching up from our exhausting experience. Oliver was a little trooper - he was so good. Looking forward to seeing Rome!

P.S. The date on this post is wrong - it is supposed to be August 15, 2007. I used an old post from when I was setting up the blog and the date didn't change.