I'd just like to take this time to write about how exciting the news was to me regarding the 3.0 update for the iPhone. The preview that was given at the keynote on March 17 has made me officially decide to switch over to AT&T and get on the iPhone bandwagon.
I've wanted the iPhone for the past couple years, but cost and the fact I have been with Verizon for so long kinda put a damper on things.
However, my contract with Verizon will be done this summer and I've decided that as soon as the 3.0 software is out, I will be purchasing a new iPhone and going with the new carrier.
This is very exciting for me, since I'm planning for it. But the only downside is that now I'll have two very nice things that I would like to look into either selling or giving away. I'd like to avoid the latter, but we'll just have to see what happens.
I will be in possession of both my 16GB iPod Touch (1st Gen) and my silver Blackberry Pearl. I'm debating on whether or not to keep the iPod Touch, as it's such a great gadget and the one thing I never leave home without. It doesn't even make calls, yet I carry it around with me more than most people carry their phones. In fact, I think I've left my place many times without my cell phone, but always make sure my iTouch is in hand. Weird.
Anyway, the Blackberry is great... I love it... but won't have any more need for it when I'm done. What I was thinking of doing was trying to sell it but there's a chance I might not have a choice but to give it away. We'll just have to wait and see.
Regarding the contracts and all that... I went to the AT&T store across the street from my place yesterday and the guy who helped me informed me of several things I was actually not aware of that really make me happy. The fact that I'll get to keep my same phone number is awesome. That's a huge plus because I won't have to tell the whole world my number has changed and I wouldn't have wasted so much paper and ink on my business cards.
I'm thinking of the 8GB version for now... no need for me to go 16 gigs on the phone. I'm not big on the "filling your iPod with your entire music library". The less space, the better for me. My iPod touch currently has... (checking)... hmm... 11 gigs used. That's odd... Oh, I forgot I downloaded like the entire video podcast of Apple Quicktips. I need to just delete those.
Whatever - I don't need to worry about iPod space. So that's a plus there.
Also, if I could even get $100 for my ipod touch, that would basically pay for the iPhone (for me). I was one of the many (or few) who rushed out to get an iPod touch as soon as they were available in the fall of 2007. I picked mine up from Fry's on October 3 - only 3 days after they were released. The 1st gen aren't AS cool as the current 2nd gen, but it works just fine to me. I'll probably just give it to my mom or my brother or something. we'll see.
So that's it. It seems that most of my blogs on here focus on 2 or 3 subjects. One of them being technology and cell phones. I'll have to mix things up a bit more and talk about more interesting stuff like.... LCD tv's and beautiful texas weather in the springtime and ... well, I don't know.
I'm outta here. Hope everyone has a great weekend.
This is a copy from a note I just posted on Facebook. I figured it would be a good ice-breaker to get myself back into blogging here again. I guess I don't need to blog at all, but I've always got stuff to say and need an outlet since I'm moved to a new place and back to living alone - which I love! But there's no-one here to outlet to.
This note is just for me to write down the experience I had, just because...
...and there's nothing too special about it other than the fact that the entire day was one I will never forget. It's a long note, so it's up to you if you wanna take time out of your day to read it. This was for me to just tell my story from the weekend and keep for myself (like in a diary) so I can remember it.
I was in North Carolina this past weekend for a design meeting with W. Carteret. The meeting went well and we had some good discussions on what we want to do this year. I'm really looking forward to working more closely with the design team and putting together what looks to be a very cool show.
This meeting, being planned over a month ago, we scheduled to happen the weekend of the 27-1. Little did we know or expect it to be the time when Atlanta would get SLAMMED with inches of snow... and yes... inches of snow in Atlanta, which from what I hear is about as rare as inches of snow in Houston. Except, they got hit with it so bad that everything shut down on Sunday - the day I was supposed to fly home through Atlanta.
So, I'm out there... weather is crappy! It's rainy... cold... foggy. I was staying at a hotel on the ocean and couldn't see the ocean. (see mobile uploads).
I'm up late catching up on some e-mails... came on facebook to see my friend Lizz's status update talking about how upset she is that he flight through Atlanta via Delta was canceled on Sunday.
I froze there for a moment and said to myself... "Wait... MY flight is also Delta and going through Atlanta!" I looked it up and sure enough... canceled.
Then I looked up my flight info and they confirmed me on a flight out of Wilmington, NC at 6:05 am... on TUESDAY! (which is today as I'm writing this blog) and getting to Houston around 11am. Flying still through Atlanta.
I wasn't THAT freaked out by it or anything... I didn't really have much of a reason to hurry home, however it was working out a place to stay, hotel or whatever. But you all know that if flights get canceled, those hotel rooms fill up QUICK. Unless you run to the phone or hotel front desk, you're more likely to get a seat on the floor at the airport than any affordable hotel room. (I guess you wouldn't "run" to the phone, especially if you have one... I guess that's more of me referencing what you had to do in the 90's before everyone had a cell... haha).
So, it's like 2am... I'm trying to text/call people to see what I can do, figure out rides on Tuesday morning... it was a mess. I wasn't sure but the plan was to still head to the airport at 9am-ish on Sunday morning. Ryan, our music arranger who was there at the hotel with me, was flying through Charlotte to Austin. His flight was fine, but mine was a no-go for sure. The band directors of WC did one hell of a job making calls for me and eventually getting me on another flight with another airline and getting me out that day still, but flying to Charlotte, then to Dallas and then to Houston. I can't thank them enough for their hospitality and their effort in helping me get home.
So, here's where the magic happens.
They booked me through US Air, which was the same as Ryan's flight, through Charlotte and off to TX. My flight was scheduled for 7:30pm out of Wilmington to Charlotte. Then something like 9pm out of Charlotte to Dallas, arriving something like 11pm. I would have to stay several hours in DFW overnight and was on the first Continental flight out at 5:40am Monday, getting to Houston around 6-something.
Ryan's flight was leaving at 12:49pm Sunday. I was looking at my phone (and I'm SO glad I have a blackberry) and watching the weather in all the cities I was flying through and from. The weather coming into Wilmington looked god awful... I mean it went from 40 to 20 to 30 to rain to snow to rain snow mix to ice to uglier than most Michigan weather. (and this is for a city down south that doesn't get weather like this as often). And Charlotte looked just as bad.
While I was in the car, I thought to myself that even though I know flights won't go out unless it's absolutely safe enough to fly, I wanted to be more optimistic than pessimistic, yet I could help but wonder if I should at least try to get on standby for an earlier flight out of Wilmington in the event my 7:30 pm flight gets delayed or canceled.
I got to the desk to check in, spoke with a very nice lady at the US Air desk and explained briefly what had happened when my Delta flight was canceled and how I wanted to see if there was any chance I could go standby for an earlier flight that night. Nothing was delayed or canceled out of Wilmington to Charlotte for the day so it didn't really matter at the time. She typed a few things in for me... looked at some stuff... looked at me and said "I can get you a seat on the flight at 12:45 to Charlotte" (same as Ryan's) - I got excited and said "YES!! That's perfect... Thank you SO much". She smiled and with a little laugh said "it's no problem..."
She then proceeded to look into my connecting flights. I explained to her that I really didn't care about waiting in Charlotte until 9pm or later because it was a much bigger and better airport to get stranded in than Wilmington. She said "I can get you on the standby list for a 2:40 flight out of Charlotte to Dallas... but then your stuck in Dallas until 5am the next day". I kinda shrugged and said "you know, that's ok". But I said that thinking "there's NO way I'll get on that flight to Dallas".
She printed my boarding passes... I was off through security and to the gate.
Not even 10 minutes after I sat down and turned on my iPod, Ryan was on the phone with his wife and I was watching the grey clouds rolling in. An older man's voice came on the PA system in the terminal and began with "I need everyone's attention please..." or something of the sort. The announcement was to notify everyone in the airport that due to the weather coming into Charlotte and Philadelphia, all flights going to those cities after 4pm tonight are canceled".
I looked at Ryan and my eyes went bug-like. I couldn't believe that I got a seat (not standby) on an earlier flight and everything was still ok for me to get out that day. Had I stayed on my original flight and not said anything, I would not have gone anywhere that day but a cheap hotel.
The lady at the counter confirmed with me and several other questioning travelers that our flights earlier in the day were in fact fine.
Then they made an announcement telling us that flights later in the evening out of Charlotte going several places are either delayed or canceled and that all hotels close to the Charlotte airport were already booked. I was sitting there going "sh*t!... oh well".
So, we get on the plane... a little one at that. I sit next to a very nice woman from Colorado and she was great to talk to on the flight. We take off and are on our way on the 1+ hour flight to Charlotte. I don't remember how long it actually was, but considering it was bumpy the entire flight and we flew in a cloud the whole way, it felt like 3 hours.
We land in Charlotte about 20 minutes behind schedule and I look at the time - it's about 2pm. The flight out of Charlotte to Dallas that I was on standby for was scheduled to leave at 2:40-ish. I looked at the board and saw it was delayed to 3:20. So, that bought me a little time to switch terminals and see if I could check in for standby.
I took my time... I didn't even walk on the moving sidewalk. I waited for the train/shuttle and got to the counter around 2:20-ish. I was behind at least 5 other people who I assumed were waiting to figure out the standby thing. As they went up one by one I overheard this or that about them getting on standby... I wasn't really paying attention. I spent most of the time on my ipod playing solitaire.
So, I get up there, smiled at the lady who was older... seemed somewhat over it... and just said "hi, I was just seeing about getting my name on the standby list". I showed her the blank boarding pass they gave me in Wilmington and she looked it up and said "yes, we already have you on the list". I shrugged and said "oh... okay, cool! Thanks!".
I sat down, and as time went by, there were flights at the gates all around me getting canceled or moved to other gates. The flights by me were to Boston and Newark and I think they both were canceled. I just stuck to my tunes and played more solitaire.
They called 3 names... none of them mine of course. They called 3 more... one was the last name Harper (I think... thought it was me... almost died. haha).
Then she called my name! I almost tripped over my computer bag, I was so excited. I went up there, she gave me a boarding pass and said "you're the last one". no joke! I was so excited I could hardly contain my smile. I looked out to everyone looking at me and had to quickly hide that smile as I knew several of them were waiting and hoping to get on that flight. I did feel a little bad, but I was then just amazed I got on that flight... couldn't believe it.
They call my group... I get on the plane... we get off the ground about 30 minutes late but after a bumpy take-off, we landed smoothly in a sunny and clear Dallas around 5pm CST.
I was SO relieved to be in Dallas and the first thought (and only one) was to not stay in Dallas for 12 hours but talk to Continental, cancel the remainder of my flight (I had no checked baggage), rent a car and drive home. That was ALL I really considered to be an alternative to waiting 12 hours in the DFW airport.
So, I went out the exit... knowing I couldn't just walk back in, and went to the Continental counter, greeted by another wonderful lady. She asked if she could help me... I kinda stood there silent and still - maybe to her as if I didn't hear her, but I was just taking in the moment and realizing how it's 5:15pm and I wasn't even supposed to have left Wilmington by now even if the weather was perfect - let alone been stuck there overnight at least, due to that flight getting canceled.
I walked slowly up to the counter... smiled and I think I said "I can't tell you how happy I am to be here right now..." or something like that... I forget. She kinda smiled and seemed confused. I immediately recognized the fact that I better just get to the point and let her know I was going to try and get out of my flight and do the rent-a-car... but only if they would let me. There was no-one else in line behind me so none of us were in a rush.
She looked me up on the computer... we chatted a bit about everything I went through to get there, the canceled flights, the standby... I just laughed in disbelief thinking about it.
Then she looked at me and said "you know, I have a few seats available for the 7:04 flight tonight". I don't remember what she said after that because I was asking her to repeat that time... because I was so lost in thought about driving time home, the cost, where I would drop the car off etc that I didn't think I heard her right. She smiled and repeated saying she would put me on the 7:04 flight to Houston, tonight!
I was in awe... and I gratefully accepted it. She even said she wasn't going to charge me (which I didn't know there would be a charge for that, so I didn't know what to say except "thank you"), and even got me an exit row seat.
I got on that flight, it was short and sweet, landed a little after 8pm and I was home by 9:15.
This whole experience was incredible!
The weather that hit the southeast was BRUTAL!! And most everything closed down in all the cities where they're not used to this kind of weather. I do feel for those of you dealing with it still and who lost power. I hope everything gets back to normal for you guys soon.
But in many ways, there's no way I should have made it home that day... let alone, by 8:15pm. I was very lucky and believe there was someone out there looking out for me and I can't thank them enough.
In the end, I avoided a canceled flight by instinctively trying get onto an earlier flight with no certainty that the flight would get canceled. I received the last standby ticket out of Charlotte (and was probably one of the last flights OUT of Charlotte that day) and made it to Dallas. Then didn't have to get a rental and got on the next flight out of Dallas - and in an exit row with leg room (...not the exit row withOUT the leg room).
I'm just in awe of this experience and feel so lucky. I'm thankful for many things life has given me and I'm just very thankful right now for great band directors I work for, friendly people who work for the airlines and my friends who have helped me with rides and stuff when plans change.
I know maybe 2 people will have read all this. (or none... haha!) I didn't tag anyone because I know people will look at this and go "geez, I'm not gonna read all that..." and close it. I just needed to write this down for me because as little of a thing it might be to some people, it's a very big deal to me and something I will always remember next time I get stuck in an airport (which will happen) and I get stuck waiting through several flights on standby (which will happen and has happened).