Saturday, November 21, 2009

East Coast v. Alaska

Recently, Brad started watching Lobstermen. This new show is a riot, mainly because nearly every third word needs bleeping. I chuckle each time I listen to a commercial for it, or the program itself, or at least those portions that I can hear. Nestled into the corner of the couch, he chuckles, lifts his fist and declares, “These are my people!” And you know, in some respects I agree with him. There are many (many) times that we both miss the east coast. This week was not one of them.

Brains. While on the east coast, my IQ decreased, I swear. So many conversations evolved around the hottest news items, as we were just 3 hours south of the beltway. And in those dialogues, I was shocked at the amount of misinformation and how it was presented. Honestly, NPR is headquartered in DC. Listen to it. Learn the facts. Be able to articulate why you feel a certain way about an issue. Waxing poetic is sooooooo 2007. Even James Carville no longer does it. Keep up, people!

Beauty. I am all for the beach hair look: slightly wind blown and waves. It is romantic, goes well with swim suits and casual sundresses. But when paired with my business attire, the poodle-esque coif I sported this week was shameful. I had forgotten what humidity does to my follicles. You know the adage, “Are you having a bad hair day?” Yeah, well, I brought true meaning to that each day. BUT, it is somewhat better than the hat head I will sport for the next few months of colder weather in Kodiak. At least my best poodle impersonation gives my coif body…wow, that was a really shameful attempt at a silver lining, huh?

Spirit. Customer service on the east coast is dead, nonexistent, and needs a serious revival. My return trip to the west coast was a test of my patience. On Thursday, FAA had computer issues, which delayed all Atlanta flights by 2 hrs—my connecting city. Long story short: after speaking with Amex (corporate travel booking agent), I went to the NWA/Delta counter to get my ticket kicked over to another airline that was not impacted- US Air. Two women gave me the biggest drama about the change; and I mean drama: whining about how I was getting them in trouble, how the two hour delay was industry wide (it was not), and how my agent had told me wrong (five minutes after getting off the phone with her). I stood my ground, literally, for 35 minutes (!) to get the flight I wanted and that Amex said was available. By the time I finally got them to agree, the actual transfer was done and printed in 4 minutes! The audacity, the complete disregard to help a traveler far from home was shocking. I handed them both my military ID (afterall, Hampton Roads is a military community) and my Alaskan drivers license (afterall, Palin Palooza is omnipresent), and there was no recognition on either count. For the love. I love AK Airlines and knowing the crew in Kodiak- by name.

Suffice to say, I am heartbroken that I was not far enough north to get a true Dunkin Donuts coffee, or listen in a conversation in which every third word is an explicative, but I could not wait to head west and back to Alaska.

Yes, ladies and gents. I think we have a convert on our hands…

1 comment:

Lance said...

Sad to say, but customer service is dead everywhere. The East coast doesn't have a lock on that business. My trip from LA/LB to DC was horrible. I can't stand United!! Glad you made it home safely.