Archive for December, 2013

Back in North Battleford

Posted in North Battleford, Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Toronto, Travel, Vacation with tags , , , , , on December 29, 2013 by Amanda

I just arrived back in North Battleford. Both of my flights were delayed about half an hour leaving though the first one (which, of course, I cared about less) made up the time and arrived on time while the second one didn’t. The first flight was delayed because some idiot check in a bag but didn’t bother boarding the plane and his bag had to be removed while the second flight was delayed because of a plane swap and then de-icing. The second flight really gave me a headache; while I know prop planes are louder than other planes, for some reason I found this plane much worse than other such planes I’ve been on! While looking on the map while flying to Edmonton, I really wondered if the money saved and the miles gained by flying to Edmonton and then to Saskatoon is really worth the trouble. I suspect I’ll probably make the same decision again if it proves to be a cheaper option again though!

The roads in Saskatoon were kind of bad and the roads weren’t great when I got back to North Battleford. The highway, with a couple of brief exceptions, was pretty clear. I find it pretty disconcerting driving on such a dark highway; I don’t know if I could do it if I didn’t know where I was going!

I spent last night in Toronto. I had intended to EdgeWalk but that was cancelled. I know that it is definitely a weather-dependent activity but I was still quite disconcerted. I opted for a refund instead of rescheduling as I have absolutely no idea when I’ll next be in Toronto but I do eventually intend to book it again.

I guess this is quite the complaint-ridden post. I’m sorry.

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Sand sculptures etc.

Posted in Home, Niagara, Sand sculptures, Travel, Vacation with tags , , , , on December 27, 2013 by Amanda

I went with my Mom to see the sand sculpture exhibit in Niagara Falls this morning. I had bought a Groupon for this a while ago and kind of had to go this morning as they are only open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. I missed seeing it last Sunday because of flight delays and I was going shopping with my sister over the river this afternoon; I’m headed to Toronto tomorrow and then flying back to Saskatchewan (there better not be problems this time!) on Sunday.

We arrived at the sand sculpture exhibit just before 10 am (when it was supposed to open) and it seemed deserted. There was still no one to be seen at five minutes after ten. I then called the number for the place and was told someone might be there in half an hour because of the roads being bad; the roads were pretty much perfect this morning! I then said that was unacceptable and that I was visiting from Saskatchewan and that this morning was the only time that I could visit. She then said someone would be there in five minutes. Another woman arrived within a few minutes and was very apologetic and even gave us a couple souvenirs for free! It seems that the person who was supposed to come said that she wouldn’t be coming last minute. It was pretty quiet there but by the time we left there were four other visits.

The sand sculptures were quite impressive and I do think it was worthwhile visiting. Here are a couple pictures:

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The last few days have went quickly and it seems kind of unbelievable that it is already almost time to leave! We have had winter weather the whole time I’ve been here which hasn’t happened much the last few years in Niagara.

I arrived home … eventually

Posted in Christmas, delay, Home, Toronto, Travel, Vacation, Weather, Winnipeg, Winter with tags , , , , , , , , on December 23, 2013 by Amanda

Last night I decided to not bother with being standby on the very early morning flights this morning from Winnipeg to Toronto as they left so early that I’d rather sleep and I don’t think anyone wanted to brave the still bad roads to pick me up at the airport. I was going to try to get on the 10:55 am flight but it was cancelled; luckily, I found this out before I left the hotel. Today the text messages from Air Canada did arrive promptly and I received more of them than I wanted to telling me about delays.

My flight was supposed to leave at 12:25 pm but didn’t leave until around 3:15 pm. There were a lot of people that were taken off the flight as they would miss their connections but it looks like everyone on standby got on my flight and they seemed very happy about that. Boarding took longer than it should have as there were a few people who tried to board before they were allowed to. I don’t understand why people won’t just wait to be called as it isn’t like the plane would have left without them and they didn’t even have a lot of carry-on stuff! When we landed around 6:30, there were a bunch of connections announced that people with them had to talk to a gate agent when they exited the plane; I’m assuming they had missed their connections or they had been cancelled. I also heard an announcement for people whose flights had been cancelled to pick up their baggage on Carousel 1; it seemed to be the busiest of the carousels. For once the baggage from my flight arrived on the carousel pretty quickly which rarely seems to happen at Pearson and I didn’t have to wait very long for my bag. Perhaps tall the cancelled flights actually made things quicker! There also weren’t all that many people or cars outside of the terminal so leaving the airport was surprisingly easy; perhaps this was also caused by all the cancelled flights?

It was a bit rainy on the drive home but the highways weren’t all that busy. Even with stopping for dinner we made pretty good time getting home!

An unplanned night in Winnipeg

Posted in Flight cancellation, Saskatoon, Toronto, Travel, Vacation, Weather, Winnipeg, Winter with tags , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by Amanda

I had thought of calling this an “unexpected” or “unanticipated” night but that really wouldn’t be true. I knew that this was a possibility but I was really hoping I was worrying for nothing. I feel that I’ve experienced my fair share of delays and I’ve had a very memorable missed connection but this is the first time I’ve ever had a flight I’ve been scheduled on actually cancelled.

This morning my flights looked good. I left North Battleford late this morning for Saskatoon as I was meeting someone for lunch. I found out just before 1 pm from Air Canada’s flight status phone number that my flight from Winnipeg to Toronto had been cancelled. I didn’t get a text message telling me that it had been cancelled until 2.5 hours later! As the phones were jammed and the online rebooking tool had been timing out when I’d tried it earlier (I had tried to see if I could fly out earlier), I went to the airport. There was no line there! However, my only option if I didn’t want to wait until Monday to leave was to take my original flight to Winnipeg and then take a flight to Toronto from there at 12:25 pm tomorrow. Apparently, the big problem is getting a flight out of Saskatoon. I did feel somewhat better about things when I overheard a woman being told that she’d been rescheduled to fly from Winnipeg to Toronto on the 24th (Tuesday)! It was definitely worth the extra $1 spent on parking to go to the airport early to do the flight rescheduling. On the other hand, I am feeling rather unlucky as there really weren’t that many flights to Toronto that were actually cancelled.

There are some flights I can be standby on for the morning but I trying to decide whether that is a good idea as I’d need to be at the airport earlier and the weather looks like it should be better in the afternoon than the morning tomorrow.

Worried about the weather

Posted in Home, Travel, Vacation, Weather, Winter, Worrying with tags , , , , on December 19, 2013 by Amanda

I’m scheduled to fly home on Saturday. I was originally concerned about my tight connection in Winnipeg; now, I’m much more concerned about Toronto’s weather forecast. It seems like a storm is headed there. The weather forecast on The Weather Network has been scaring me for a couple of days now as they say there is supposed to be freezing rain on Saturday. Environment Canada’s forecast seems not as scary: a chance of flurries. However, there is also a warning that an ice storm could begin late Saturday and my flight isn’t scheduled to land until nearly 11 pm. I fully realize that there is absolutely nothing I can do about the weather and flight delays can still happen even in good weather but I can’t seem to stop worrying!