I was really looking forward to going back home to Chicago for Christmas and New Year’s. After living in San Francisco for several months, I was very much in need of some hometown love. Plus, I had a staggering amount of loose ends to wrap up after dropping everything and moving in September.
The trip was exhausting, as expected, but I ultimately left Chicago feeling relieved. It’s true, I didn’t get one full night of sleep, and I didn’t get to spend enough time with friends or family. However, my huge “things to do list” was tackled and slayed. That alone was a tremendous weight off of my shoulders. Despite being sleep deprived and run-down after weeks of non-stop work, I was definitely returning to California with a more optimistic mindset. Unfortunately, my new-found optimism was slightly derailed once the airline LOST MY LUGGAGE!
I had an early morning flight back to the west coast on Sunday. When I arrived, I soon discovered not all of my luggage arrived with me. In fact, one of my bags was never even loaded onto the plane. After spending time in the Southwest Baggage Claim office, I was assured my bag was still in Chicago and would be on the next direct flight out, set to arrive around 11pm. Additionally, for a fee of $25.00, my bag would be delivered to my home shortly afterwards, between midnight and 4am. I was warned that the delivery person would call me to confirm the delivery, and if I did not answer the call, the delivery would not take place. So, after staying up all night finishing last minute projects, and not resting on my flight, I would now be staying up another night waiting on my missing bag.
It was a struggle staying awake for a 2nd straight night, but I did it. Unfortunately, I received no call, and no bag was delivered. I called to check on the delivery, but the Baggage Office was closed and no one would be there until morning. By now, I was loopy from no sleep and a zombie at work, but I was excited to finally reach someone at the airport, who said my bag was located and would be to me in 4-6 hours. FINALLY! I’d have my bag and I could get some rest.
4-6 hours came and went and still no bag. I was told the delivery folks were severely backed up, so I stayed up yet another night, certain my bag would arrive. Plus, I was way too afraid to go to sleep for fear of missing that call. Remember, I was warned… miss that call, no bag. Bottom line… I stayed up all night for a 3rd night and still NO FREAKING BAG!! WTF??!!
At this point, I was delirious and struggling to make sense on-air at work. In the meantime, I received an email from the airline that said delivery driver Carlos had my bag and would drop it off by 4pm, unless traffic, weather, or something else delayed the delivery. By now, I’m half-crazy from no sleep and upset that the airline had me “twisting in the wind” for days.
I’m happy to say, my bag arrived by 2pm, and because it was sooooooo late (3 days), I did not have to pay the $25 delivery fee. How nice of them. (sarcasm) Here’s a secret… at that point, there was no way in hell I was going to pay that damn fee!
I can sort of laugh about this crazy experience, now that I’ve had some sleep, but I truly sympathize with folks who have to deal with never ever getting their luggage returned. I feel your pain. A couple of folks asked me, what in the world was so important in that bag. There was vital paperwork and some other things, but I’m especially happy that I have all the tasty snacks I brought back from Chicago. I can’t find them here in The Bay, and a little bit of home goes a long way in keeping the spirits up. You know I love my snacks!