Thursday, October 13, 2005

The Airport Garage Story

Got up at 5 a.m. and got to the airport at 6 a.m. My daughter's flight left at 7 a.m. Had some nice goodbye's - of course my grandaughter had a hard time holding back the tears. She loves and already misses her mommy.

I totally screwed up leaving the airport though. Typical. They have a new system now. In the old system you took your ticket upon entry, and paid at the toll booth when you left. Not anymore. You take a ticket upon entry, and then there are automated ticket pay stations at the elevators in the parking garage where you pay when you go back to the parking garage. So we put our ticket into the machine, AND our money, and the machine gave us the change and off we went. Wellllllll, when I got all the way down to the exit area, there were big green signs that said "PAID TICKETS". Well my ticket was paid,,,so off I go. Only to come to ANOTHER machine that says "Insert ticket here". And a gate down in front of me. Great. I have no ticket. I paid, got my change, and that was that. There's a yellow button on THIS machine that says "?". Yeah I got a question. How the heck do I get outta here??

Someone starts talking to me from inside the machine. So I explain my dilemma. The voice says "the cashier at your far left will help you." Thank goodness no one was pulled up behind me...or how else would I have gotten out of there (needing to back UP, of course) to GO to the cashier at my far left. Oh hell yes,,,you KNOW if there had been someone behind me, and they had to raise the gate to let me out.....I woulda made a break for it. Stop ME. Go ahead. What are you gonna do? Put me in airport jail??

Hmmmmmmmm....on second thought.... back out and go to the cashier at my far left. Now I have to explain. And explain. And wait. While she is on the phone. While she is asking me allllll kinds of questions. What machine did I pay at? Was it at the first sky bridge or the second sky bridge? Was it at the machine on the left or the machine on the right? Lady, I have NO CLUE. It's not even LIGHT out yet. Ok. Ok. I tried. I tried very hard (with my grandaughter's help) to answer her questions while she transmits alllllllllllll my $3.00 paid ticket information to whoever was on the other end of the line. That "whoever" who holds the KEY to the GATE that is still DOWN in front of me. She comforts me with, "This happens a lot." I let her know I had no idea I was going to still need the ticket. I thought the machine ate it. It gave me my change! Heck, I'm gone! Ok. I'm trying. I'm trying. Patience. FINALLY, she says, "ok, he's going to open the gate for you." So my grandaughter and I drive thru the gate, and you can hear me muttering,,,,"So tell me please,,,,,and there was WHAT other OPTION????"

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