Nevada Trip Journal: Friday 13, 2015 Fort Worth, TX to Reno, NV
Arose at 3:30 am to catch my 5:00 am Shuttle to DFW airport. My driver was a ”lost boy” from southern Sudan who arrived in the US in 2005. We had a pleasant and interesting conversation about the wars in Sudan and his refuge experience. He had been working in the oil fields until a month ago when he was laid off and is now driving for Super Shuttle. He has a wife and two children still in Sudan and hope to someday bring them over to the USA.
At the Sky Cap stand the agent said do any of these weigh more than 55 pounds? I replied, “ I really do not know” as I laid a $5 bill done on his podium. He replied, “Well, I certainly hope not.” and passed them through. My luggage was quite heavy and I suspect they were over 55 lbs. Some might call it a bribe, but I call it a tip!
My wheelchair assistant seemed to have a deadline to meet someone else. He was in a hurry to unload me and when he saw another assistant he passed me off to him. By the time I made it to my gate of departure, I had already spent $20 in tips. Five each to the shuttle driver, the skycap, the first wheelchair assistant and the second wheelchair assistant.
Had to make a connection at the Phoenix Airport but missed it because the gates were so far apart. My wheelchair assistant was a young black girl in excellent shape. She literally ran pushing my wheelchair the whole way to the gate (which seemed like a mile), but when we arrived with four minutes to spare, they were pulling the loading ramp back from the plane. They had to book me another flight which was four hours later. I had her push me to the Cowboy Ciao restaurant and gave her a $10 tip for her great effort.
At the restaurant I met a fellow traveler who had also missed the same flight. I invited her to have lunch with me as we waited for our next flight. She was recently widowed woman from Carrollton, TX. head to have a gambling holiday with friends in Reno. I’m glad Marty (the ladies name) joined me for lunch as it helped the time to go by faster.
The Phoenix to Reno connection was on a small American Eagle plane. To me it looked like a toy plane in the shape of a pencil. There were only two seats on each side of the isle. I didn’t care, by this time I would have ridden on the back of an eagle to get to Reno.
My brother Dan called me to let me know he had made rental car arrangements and picked up my luggage. He thought I was in Reno and did not know I had missed my connection. Because I wasn’t going to Lake Tahoe that night, I told him to leave it with baggage claim. When I finally touched down in Reno, I had a very pleasant older man as a wheelchair assistant. He pushed me to Alamo to pick up my car and took my baggage claim tickets to go get my luggage. He returned shortly saying someone had already picked up my luggage earlier. I called Dan and he confirmed he had my luggage.
Funny Story: He said when he tired to give it to baggage claim they would not take it. “Because he could have planted a bomb in it.” He said he decided to just walk away from it until he heard them call, “Security! Security!” He then told them “OK, OK, I’ll take it!” So Dan had to take my luggage up to Lake
Tahoe, because he had an important meeting.
After I got my rental car, I headed straight for Bennett Medical Services to pick up some oxygen tanks that my doctor had ordered. More problems. The doctors order did not have all the needed information and they had to call Fort Worth for more information. Another hour added to a long day. The customer service representative was from Yerington and had actually heard of Yerington Mondays on Facebook. Her maiden name was Matthews and I believed was related to the Mathews that owned the gas station. Small world, I hope she makes me a Facebook friend.
After I finally got my oxygen, I made arrangements for Dan & Robin to meet me at the McDonalds on Kietzke Lane to drop off my luggage. Because I was going to spend the night with my niece Tanya’s family in Spanish Springs. I felt bad that they had to drive all the way back from Tahoe for the second time in a day. But I had to have my medicine which was in my suitcases.
Finally arrived at thy niece Tanya’s house exhausted and excited to see the Willey family after five years. Had a great ham dinner and finally crashed. Boy what a day- a comedy of errors!