Monday, June 04, 2007

The Challenges of International Travel Pt II

I work for a very cool company, Return Path. They are so cool that when I was invited to speak at the APRICOT conference in Bali, Indonesia as Mr. CAUCE, they agreed to pick up the tab for the hotel, while my accrued Aeromiles went to pay for business class airfare.

But here's the thing. I was supposed to fly Montreal-Los Angeles-Bangkok-Bali.

All except the L.A. Flight was delayed by two hours after I checked in, so they decided to re-route me Montreal-London-bangkok-Bali.

All except that they couldn't do the same for my luggage.

All except that I had called my credit card company and told them my itinerary and when they saw charges in London Heathrow, they figured my card had been compromised, and canceled it.

So when I landed in bangkok, I had no money and no clothes, nor reservations for a hotel. It was like one of those stupid reality shows with no prize nor t.v. crew following me 'round.

It all worked out, I bought a SIM with cash, called my bank with skype off've my laptop, they called back to my Montreal number which was by that point re-routed to my Skype in number in Colorado which is then pointed at my Skype account which was pointed at my new Thai SIM in my mobile, and voila! problem solved. Except I was sick as a dog, and the suits turned out pretty crappy. When I had left home I had a cold by the time I made it to Bangkok it had become full-blown pneumonia.

Bali, of course, was stunningly beautiful,even if the conference was a bust, the guy who organized it changed the day of the panel at the last minute; it was mis-named in the program, and he likes to pontificate quite a bit, so he took up half the :15 I had been allocated (for which I flew 30 hours), yacking on so everyone could hear what he had to say on the subject I had been invited to address. It is like he adds names to panels he runs so that he can draw people in who wouldn't otherwise attend if they knew he was just going to be standing up at the front of the room jacking off for :45, which is what it was, in reality.

Nevertheless, if tropical paradise is what you want, Bali is where you find it.

FOLLOW-UP - of course, the waylaid luggage never showed up in Bali, despite repeated attempts and promises. When i arrived home they thought it might never have left, and I spend an hour or so hanging around the Customs/Lost Luggage place to no avail. Air Canada also lost some luggage for me on the way home, but that showed up two days later.

Time passed, I made other trips and bought new luggage (Swiss Army - it rules!). Last week, a full three months after my return from Bali, the outbound luggage showed up. A cheap digital camera, my external iPod speakers (by Microsoft, bought on the Seattle trip) and my Skype headset were all missing but everything else of no value (underwear shorts and toiletries) was intact. Now I am faced with trying to reclaim the losses. I can't wait!

1 comment:

Bobo the Bimbo said...

oh man. Well at least you had clothes and money in the end. Hope you're better.