So today is my first day back after the New Year.  I was supposed to land in DC yesterday early enough to whip up a nice meal for a post for today.  However, Delta had other plans.

I went to Las Vegas for New Years.  It was amazing, they closed the strip, there were tons of fireworks and all of the tables started at $50.  Perfect.  Haha.  So after an amazing weekend I headed to the airport at 5:30 am for my 7:15 flight.  Upon arriving, my plane was delayed by 3 hours.  So Delta being the helpful sort automatically booked me for another flight that was leaving at 7 am.  Nice.   My original flight had a single stop in Detroit for an arrival time in DC at 7PM.  The new flight had a single stop in Minneapolis with an arrival time in DC at 5PM.  Since it was close to 7, I ran and boarded the plane without eating.  I would eat something when I landed in Minneapolis.

So I boarded the plane for my ride home.  After everyone was loaded on the plane, the pilot came on and said that there was a little hiccup on the flight to Vegas and they needed a mechanic to sign off on some paperwork.  No problem, I had a Saveur and a Food and Wine to read.  Thirty minutes later the pilot came on and said that they were still waiting for the Mechanic to arrive.    Thirty more minutes passed and we started to hear big thumps coming from the back of the plane.  The pilot came on and said, don’t worry the mechanic was just restarting a few things.  Forty-five minutes later and the pilot came on and said things looked good and that we would be taking off soon.  Yep 2 hour and 20 minutes after our original time to depart.  Awesome!!!

Then we taxied out to the runway.  When we reached the end of the runway to take off the pilot came on and said that we would have to circle back and take a break.  Supposedly they failed to remove one of the parking breaks, overheating the breaks.  I we were to take off at that point the tire might blow.  Awesome.  So we circled back and waited another 35 minutes on the tarmac.  Oh, at this point in time my connection flight was leaving Minneapolis.  Sweet.

So we took off.  They came through the plane with sodas.  Oh, no food.  This was a makeup flight and they didn’t have any food to purchase.  So starving I landed 2.15 hours later in Minneapolis.  Upon exiting the lady at the front desk said that she re-routed me and that I was given a little gift for the inconvenience.  She said I could stay and argue with her but my connecting flight had already finished boarding.  She recommended that I run 400 yards to the other terminal to get on the flight.  So I sprinted to the plane.  Upon arriving there was quite a line to get on this plane that had already finished boarding.  Since everyone was going east, they just placed everyone on that was on the Vegas to Minneapolis flight onto the Minneapolis to Detroit flight.  Yep, yet another stop.  In my rush I never even realized that I was not going straight to DC.

So the plane was boarded and we took off 30 minutes late.  No food on this flight either.  They changed planes to accommodate the Vegas passengers and didn’t stock it with food.  Awesome, So we landed in Detroit and I thought I was going to have to run.  Nope, 2.5 hour layover.  Hooray, time to eat!!!  There was a Jose Cuervo Restaurant in the terminal.  Enchiladas for me.  I was starving.  We didn’t land in Detroit till 5ish.  That is over 18 hours since the last time that I ate.

The final leg of my journey was on a tiny aircraft.  Roughly 50 seats. Delta/Northwest charge you for your first bag and people are cheap so nobody checked their bags.  Further everyone brought huge bags.  Up till this point I was on large aircraft so I didn’t notice this.  But smaller planes don’t have the overhead storage that the larger ones do so it took 30 minutes to board.  Nobody wanted to gate check their bags, so we had to play a game of tetris to fit the 50lb roller bag of the d-bag next to me onto the plane.  Finally we took off on my final journey to DC.

I landed at Reagan National at 10:15 PM.  It was good to be home.  The kicker.  My bags didn’t get the bump to the Minneapolis plane and took the original flight.  Go figure, they landed in DC 4 hours before me.  Yep, if I would have just waited I would have made it home sooner.  While I got home I opened the envelope from Delta.  Ooo $25 off my next flight.  That totally makes up for the 16 hours in the airport.  $25 off my next flight, why it would have been nicer for Delta to just kick me in the A$$.  $25, it is like they are just trying to piss me off.  I sat on a tarmac for 3 hours without food or drink and you give me $25.  I miss all of my flights and show up 3 hours later than when I was supposed to and you give me $25.  Screw you Delta.

I will be back tomorrow with a nice dish.  Thanks for letting me vent about the airline industry.  If anyone in the airline industry is reading this, stop charging for bags as it slows everything down.  People are cheap they are not going to pay to send a bag no matter how cheap it is.  Make bags free, then the overheads will be cleared and we can take off on time.


Rex is an avid griller, barbecuer and bacon enthusiast. He is the Pitmaster for the Rex BBQ competition team. Rex was also featured on the TV show American Grilled. If you have any questions or wish to have Rex decode your favorite dish, click on the ASK REX link in the menu above.


  1. Betsy and I had a very similar travel experience. Seriously… I'm never flying delta again. I will pay hundreds of dollars more even to not have to deal with their customer service.

    Why can't every airline be like Southwest?

  2. I have a friend who works for Delta by way of their merger with Northwest. From what I hear through her, it's a doomed corporate culture.

    18 hours? Did you have any "Donner Party" visions about the passenger next to you?

    • Chris, It was a total nightmare. Nobody seemed to know what was going on. I did get to travel on Delta, Northwest and KLM planes. The tri-fecta of Delta.

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