Friday, December 6, 2013

Airport Indignities

by Pa Rock
Traveling Fool

There is no way to measure my hatred of airports.  They are disgusting cattle pens staffed by uncaring individuals whose sole purpose in life is to cause travelers as much consternation and grief as is humanly possible before packing them onto flying tin cans and getting them the hell out of Dodge.

This afternoon finds me at Kansas City International awaiting a flight back to Phoenix.  On the plus side, KCI is the easiest airport to navigate that I have ever encountered.  It is only a matter of mere steps from your car to the ticketing gate to the boarding areas.  Unfortunately, there is talk of building a new airport that will undoubtedly mess up a system that works.

Another positive is free Wi-Fi that is easy to access.

On the negative, the eating choices suck.  There is one restaurant that is open in the pre-check area of U.S. Airways.  Usually there is an overpriced snack bar in operation in the gate area, and even though the lady who started me through the pocket-emptying area assured me that I could get something to eat at the snack bar, it is closed.  My choices are to go back out to the restaurant and then re-strip to get back into the gate area after lunch - or suck it up and forget about lunch.

I did notice several single servings of Half-and-Half that weren't secured in the snack bar area, so those might do in a pinch.

Apparently West Plains has ten inches of ice and snow.  Kansas City has a dusting of the white stuff that fell the night before last.  It is cold here, though.  My bank sent out a listing of its branches that are closed today.  Arvest, a bank system that is privately owned by the Walton (Wal Mart) family, has branches in most towns in Arkansas and Missouri -including some as far north as Kansas City.  Arkansas must have gotten hit hard by the snow and ice, because the Arvest branch banks are closed as far south as Hot Springs.

And on a side note:

Nelson Mandela died yesterday in South Africa, and the light of the world is diminished by his passing.

1 comment:

Xobekim said...

You are right the Passenger's Bill of Rights needs to include the right to eat normally priced food by whatever franchise operates the restaurant. The airport pricing structure for food is nothing more than extortion.

I am an advocate of the upgraded single terminal plan for MCI. The original plan was an innovation in its day. This innovation has not always lent itself to the ease and convenience you experience. Ideally all three terminals are fully functional. Less than ideally takes place when you arrive at one terminal and have to take the bus to the other terminal. Of course some got on the wrong bus, some were lost wondering how to get to the other terminal. Some got real pissed off.

With the new plan, as I understand it, you go through the screening when you go into the terminal. Then if you need something outside your gate area, you are still in the secure area. So getting to the restaurant won't be the hassle it is today.

But the good old days of screaming up to the terminal, running in to the gate, and catching the plane nanoseconds before it taxis away, those days are gone forever. Just like running through the Dearborn Street Station in Chicago, having a conductor open a gate on a car, and grabbing on as you hoist yourself into the train. All the exciting stuff I did as a kid are memories.

It is currently 1°F. in Kansas City.