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Yesterday, Katie and I were supposed to fly to Tucson for a long weekend at the El Conquistador Golf, Tennis, & Spa Resort. Key words being "supposed t0." DFW airport shut down because of incompetency and simple lack of preparedness to what was a mild snow storm. Over 500 flights were canceled and 4,000 people were stranded at the airport when we left. (As of 7:00am this morning, there are another 70 canceled flights for today.) Our terminal also got shut down, which meant that there were no taxis. Hotels were being booked 20+ miles away. Oh, and nobody got their baggage back, including us. (This is, incidentally, the 3rd time in a row that Katie and I have exited our plane to learn that we won't be able to receive our luggage...what are the chances?) Anyway, we sat on the tarmac for five hours yesterday waiting to fly out - no joke, it really was five hours. That is an hour more than the new airline "bill of rights" allows passengers to sit in such purgatory.

Basically, DFW lost all control and ability to set up and execute lineups for de-icing and take offs. Our pilot was very honest and frank about the fact that he was getting the run around - for at least two hours straight, the de-icing manager just told him that we were "a few minutes away." Basically, all the plans sat in limbo awaiting instruction and nothing ever got resolved. After (again) five hours, we simply turned around and returned to the gate, as did the other planes. The pilot said that he honestly didn't know what to tell us, except that he's never seen anything like it and called it "historic." Here's what was even better though: when we were informed to return to the gate since we were never able to be put in a lineup, we were then informed that we would have to wait even longer because they couldn't find us a gate. Luckily, we got one; however, many planes never did, and their passengers had to exit via the stairs and then be transported on a bus. My major sort of frustration, however is that the plane was fine, as were the runways, for all the snow had melted off of both. The problem was that us and the others ran out of fuel while waiting for DFW to get a plan together, which they never could. If the weather really made us miss our weekend, I wouldn't mind as much. What kills me is that our trip, as that of thousands of others, was aborted because of total incompetence on the part of DFW. To put their total collapse in perspective: Dallas Love-Field had no cancellations, but they did have some delays...up to an hour.

We did, however, get to sit and visit with an amazingly kind man from North Carolina. He's rather prominent in the legal community, yet very humble and full of interesting stories. He was a joy to visit spend five hours with and without a doubt made the time much more tolerable.

Matthew Moore's Facebook Profile



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