Monday, July 27, 2009

The longest day of my life = random act of kindness

The kids and I headed to the airport last Thursday morning at 6:00am to catch our flight to Utah. We were so excited but a little bit worried because I had purchased tickets for my kids but I had a buddy pass that was going to expire so I decided to risk not getting on the flight and used that.
We got to the airport and waited to see if I was going to make the flight and....I didn't get on!!! Then starts the longest day of my life.

Until that morning my kids had never flown by themselves and they weren't very excited to do it that morning either. I was told that either they had to go or I would have to pay to change their flights so I decided the best thing to do was have them head to UT without me where Brandon's sister Annie would be waiting for them. They were so upset and worried about flying alone, I was upset and worried about them flying alone but knew when I made the arrangements that this could happen.
I put them on the flight and watched them leave and them made sure Annie was going to be there to pick them up and could keep them until I got there. Annie had plans to a go to a concert that night but was able to keep them for most of the day...

In the meantime I missed 2 more flight out of Cleveland and then while sitting there was informed that Obama was flying in to Cleveland at noon and there would be a ground stop!!!! I checked with the gate agent to see if there was a flight that I could get on and to get out of Cleveland before the ground stop and she finally informed me that I was not going to get out of Cleveland on any flight that day!!!!

I met another girl (from Utah) at that gate and we decided to try flying out of a different airport so I called Brandon and had him come pick us up and drive us to Akron which was about an hour away so we could try it from there.................

The girl (Callie) that drove with me made it on the flight from Akron to Atlanta while I sat there and waited.....waited....waited.... and then at the last second there was a no show and they let all the standby's on the plane!!! THANKS NO SHOW!!!!

On my flight to Atlanta I sat next to this woman who figured out that I was a standby and we got talking. I told her my situation that my kids were already in UT with my sis-in-law but she had plans but that I could leave the kids with my mother-in-law if I didn't get to UT. She preceded to tell me that she is a platinum member and wondered if there was anything she could do to help me out. I told her I didn't know and she said she was going to try to help me get to my kids..

We got to Atlanta and immediately Tina got on her phone with Delta. At the same time I got on the phone and tried to figure out if I was going to get on any flight out of Atlanta and also tried to figure out what to do with my kids.

About 10 minutes later Tina said "I got you a confirmed seat on the flight to SLC at 9:15 tonight, and they will keep you on the standby list for the 6:30 flight just in case". I was in total shock that she was able to get me a seat and asked here what she had to do to get me that seat..At first she said nothing but then she told me that she gave up 10,000 miles for me.. I don't think she knew it but at that point I broke down. I couldn't believe what she had done for me. We exchanged names and email addresses but then she said "i'm thirsty, lets go get a drink". By this time it was 4:30 Atlanta time and I had time to spare so we went to TGI Friday's and she said "i'm buying you dinner" we fought about it for a minute because I wanted to buy her dinner but she wouldn't let me.. So we sat there in the airport having dinner and I told here how much I appreciated what she had done for me and I couldn't believe that there is still someone in the world that would do this for a complete stranger. We finished our dinner and walked out and were heading to my gate when I happened to see my dad walking toward me. Yup, my dad in the Atlanta airport and he was on the 6:30 flight that I was still trying to get on. We walked to the gate together after I introduced my dad and Tina and told him what she had done for me and then we met up with Jan and her brother and his wife. I was talking with them for a minute and Tina said shes was going to let me spend the time with my family and she left. ( I felt so bad that we had spent that time together and after what she had done for me and then she was just gone).

I waited with my dad until his flight left and then headed down to the gate where Tina was supposed to be but I couldn't find here anywhere, so I decided to go back to my gate and wait.

At that point I ended up meeting up with Callie again and we sat together until she got on her flight and then I was on my own until I got on my flight at 9:00pm.

I finally made it to SLC, and when I got to my kids (my dad and Jan ended up picking them up from Wendy's house on their way home from the airport)Ali had a fever..She hadn't told anyone that she was feeling sick but she told me that she had pretty much slept most of the time at Wendy's which is a sure sign for me that she doesn't feel good. I gave her medicine and finally went to sleep!!!! AWWWW what a long day!!!

My sister Holli the one that gave me the buddy pass works for Delta and when she got home from Newport and went back to work, she told me that Tina actually gave me 25,000 miles and paid $25 for me to get on the flight!!!!! I am still amazed that she did that for me and haven't stopped thinking about her!!!!

There are still great people in the world!!!!

Tina said to me that day..."I am a firm believer in what goes around comes around,and I know that you will do something nice for somebody else". Even though it has only been a few days since then, I have tried to be more aware of those around me and what I can do to "pay it forward"


JoAnna said...

WOW!! Wow wow wow! That is amazing! What a generous and kind woman. That story makes ME want to cry!

laurylaro said...

I'm tearin' up over here. I'm so glad you made it, and for that sweet lady!

Nick and Natalie said...

wow this story gives me chills!!! You will for sure Haley. You are very thoughtful and kind, that is why it came around to you!