Out and About – Week of March 9th

I have found that there is more advice fathers should share with their sons than I have room for in just one column, so here are five suggestions. The final five will be listed next week.

Never turn down a breath mint.
Give credit. Take the blame.
Stand up to bullies. Protect those that are bullied.
Take time to snuggle your pets, they love you so much and are always happy to see you.
Be confident and humble at the same time.
In February, I had the privilege of traveling to Florida for a week’s vacation. Instead of driving for a couple of days to get to our destination, we flew out of South Bend. I have found that flying out of a smaller airport dismisses some of the problems one might have when flying out of O’Hare or Detroit Metropolitan. However, flight problems aren’t limited to just the larger airports. Our original flight to the Sunshine State was canceled, because our aircraft originated in Florida and it had a mechanical problem. Therefore, our only real choice was to take the next flight, which didn’t leave until the next day. Believe it or not, most airlines don’t have an extra airplane or flight crew just sitting around in case of a mechanical problem. Also, on our return flight home, our airplane had to abort its landing because the runway had not been properly cleared of aircraft. Aborting a landing or takeoff can be an experience not easily forgotten. Anyway, I thought I might share some advice that might make your next air-traveling experience less stressful. Please read and heed the following:

A canceled flight: This means you will likely have to deal with several long lines. To avoid this, use your cell-phone to call the airline’s toll-free reservation number to book the next flight out. The passenger service agent will do this for you with their computer, if you’d rather wait.
A tight connecting flight: If the first leg of your flight arrives late at the gate, have the gate agent alert your connecting gate. In some cases, the connecting gate will already know that you have arrived late and will hold the flight for you.
Avoiding weather delays: Try to fly early in the day. Thunder storms are less likely to occur at this time. Do your best to book non-stop flights. Never book the last flight of the day. If the flight gets canceled, you’re stuck.
Getting bumped: On crowded flights, it’s a good idea to check in at the gate at least forty-five minutes before departure. Airlines have a tendency to overbook their flights, just as hotels have been known to overbook their rooms. They do this because some passengers make two or more bookings on different airlines, then fail to cancel, once they have made their final choice. If you arrive at your gate late, your seat may have already been given to someone else.
Three rules to remember in life:

Money cannot buy happiness, but it’s far more comfortable to cry in a Porsche than on a bicycle.
Forgive your enemy, but remember the idiot’s name forever.
If you help someone when they’re in trouble, they will remember you when they’re in trouble again.
See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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