Total Pageviews

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Mykel's Journey To The North: Part Two Day THREE

Mykel's Northern Exposure
Second Entry
by Mykel Board

[This entry was finished up (I hope) on my last day in Denmark proper. It's been two weeks since I posted entry one. I've been busier than a pharmaceutical PR man. A lot of seeing old (amazingly old!) friends and blasting out what's left of my hearing at punkrock shows... and in the studio. I recorded a new song with my new friends and bandmates in THE BEND OVER BOYS. Details MAY come later. Tomorrow, it's Torshavn. To find it, check a detailed map for NOWHERE. It's right in the middle.

For now, we'll return to Kennedy Airport in New York. After a 36 hour delay.]

It makes perfect sense that HELL is a city in Norway. I start this blog in the air of Norwegian Airlines... just left Kennedy Airport-- 38 hours late. (I ain't shittin' ya.) I guess I've flown with at least 50 different airlines in the course of my long and sordid life. My favorite: Royal Jordanian Air. They gave me TWO DINNERS (yeah free) on a trip from London to New York.

Norwegian Air is THE WORST... worse even than Ryan Air... worse that Spirit Air. The first flight was canceled completely... no notice... no text... no nothing until I called the airline and... oh yeah, by the way your flight is canceled. You can read that in the last blog.

So I'm getting ready for the same flight the next day. I leave at 11:30 at night, just like I was supposed to last time. Nice time... cooler and I get into Copenhagen in the afternoon... convenient for Marianne who's meeting me at the airport. Right? Yeah, right.

That flight too is canceled... er... rescheduled to 11AM the next morning. I get in to Copenhagen at half past midnight. I can't expect someone to meet me that late. Okay, I'll take a cab... I text Marianne. She says she'll meet me just the same. Amazing! So I wake up at 5AM... my time.*

(*40 minutes earlier than “real time.” Details in last blog.)

I again go through leaving checklist, return to the airport via the same too-narrow subway... they're running slower at this time in the morning. I guess there are fewer travelers, so fewer subways, right? But why do they stop and sit between stations?

We are delayed because of train traffic ahead. We'll be moving shortly.

Train traffic? It's five in the morning and we're delayed because of train traffic? Okay, I have plenty of time. They plane doesn't leave until 11... yeah, right.

Finally, the train starts again, gets me to Sutphin Blvd (I'm trying a new route), where I switch to the Train-to-the-Plane which continues to the airport... effortlessly... not a glitch in the entire $5 12 minute ride.... transit perfection.

That's it for transit perfection...

So where was I... oh yeah... leaving the AIR TRAIN Terminal One. I again check the AISLE sign. Norwegian Air AISLE H. I head to H, knowing exactly what to expect. I look for some guy in the now-familiar uniform. He's standing in a little booth at the back end of Aisle H.

Excuse me,” I say, “Could you tell me where...”

Aisle E,” he says. “Norwegian Air is at Aisle E.”

I nod... trudge off to Aisle E.

There is no one in Aisle E. No lines. No people behind the counters... not even a wrong airline to entice me to a false line. Nothing.

I ask another guard, this one standing a bit closer to my current position.

Where is the check-in for Norwegian Air?” I ask.

Check that sign over there,” he says pointing to the AISLE H sign.

I shake my head. “That sign says Aisle H,” I tell him. “The guy in Aisle H says it's in Aisle E.”

Then check the screens there.” He points to a TV Monitor. “The information should be there.”

I check the monitor. It has my flight... to Copenhagen... listed as leaving at 11AM from gate nine. Unlike the other airlines on the screen, this entry is market--- in red... CHECK-IN CLOSED.

I look for a guy in uniform.

Excuse me,” I ask him. “Could you tell me why almost all the other check-ins on the monitor are open, but this one says Check-In Closed? What does that mean?”

It means that the check-in is not open,” he says.

I don't hit him.

Give it a little while,” he continues. “It will open.”

I head to the food court for breakfast. I haven't had much of an appetite lately, but I should eat something. Ok, here's a Duncan Donuts. Bagel with bacon and cream cheese. I donno, but that just seems WRONG! I'll have a croissant. It's awful.

Then it's back to Aisle H. I know what to expect when I get there... yep, a uniformed guy asking if I want Norwegian Air.

No,” I tell him, “but I have no choice.”

He doesn't get it, but he sends me to Aisle E again. It's about ten minutes before I find out that the actual check in is Aisle A.

Quicker than it takes to reach the tech support guy when your new TV doesn't connect, I'm at the front of the line. I put my bag on the scale.

“I'm sorry,” says the very non-Norwegian looking (unless Norway has moved to South Asia) check-in clerk. “You are only allowed 20 kilos. Your bag is 22 kilos.”

Okay,” I tell her. “I'm allowed one check-in bag. It's part of the travel agent deal. Besides I've been delayed 36 hours on this flight. I'll just check this bag.”

Of course,” she says with a smile that'd make Ilsa She Wolf of the SS seem saintly. “I'll give you a food voucher to take care of your inconvenience. But I can't take your bag here. You'll have to wait on that line.” She points to a line of people that stretches from the counter to somewhere in Brooklyn. She then writes out a voucher and hands it to me.

Hold on!” I tell her, pulling my bag off the scale. She takes another victim while I open the bag and take out a shirt and wrap it around my waist. Then, a book (one of my self-written books... brought as a trinket for the natives)... that, I put in the pocket of my raincoat. A couple CDs brought for trading for rare shit... in the other pocket. A sweater that I tie around my neck. (Remember this is August in New York.) Dripping sweat, I zip up the bag and put it back on the scale. 20.2 kilos.

That's okay,” says Isla... with a wink.

Boarding pass in hand, I head for security. Of course, I'm stopped... my hands swabbed, the swab put in the explosive detection machine. I pass the test.

Then on to the gate. It's 9:30. My boarding pass says BOARDING 10:00. In an hour, I get on the plane... Yeah right. At about a half hour late, I decide to take a picture.
I should have waited. It's about 11:45 when I hear Thank you for your patience. We'll now begin board. All people who need help boarding or families with children under 6 can board at this time. By noon, I'm on the plane.

At 1PM the plane still sits on the runway. The pilot is on... perfect American English: “I apologize for the wait,” he says. “A plane ahead of us has had landing gear problems. We're waiting for a truck to tow it off the runway. Then, there are 10 planes ahead of us.”

I shit you not.

Once in the air, I pull out the slick NORWEGIAN AIR magazine. I'm happy to see that there is free wi-fi on board.
No there isn't. “Sorry sir, this flight does not have wifi.”

I don't ask.

After a couple hours in the air, the croissant has begun to wear off. I ask the stewardess (as “Norwegian” as the check-in clerk) for something to eat. I show her the voucher. She frowns and goes somewhere... coming back in a few minutes.

Sorry sir,” she says, “that voucher can only be used in the airport before you leave. We can't take it for food here.”

You can't take a Norwegian Air voucher on Norwegian Air?” I ask.

She nods..... excuse me while I strangle the screaming baby in the seat behind me.

Okay, already. You get the idea!

At 3AM I'm in Copenhagen. Marianne is there to pick me up and take me to her apartment... My private apartment for my time here. She's staying with her husband in their summer house. Now, the Northern Adventure® really begins.

--To Be Continued

If, for some odd reason, you like my writing and want to see more (opinionated, political, punkrock), you can check out my other blog. here.

No comments: