Relatively Speaking

So, Mom’s been after me to go to this family picnic in Orlando on the 24th. I’ve kept the date open even though relatives are not way high on my list of things. I’m basically a loner and happily unapologetic for it. My list of reasons is long, but they aren’t for public discussion as they would piss off far too many people.

Anyway, if I was in better shape, I’d drive. But — no thanks to Progressive Auto Insurance who are cheap, uncaring bastards who wouldn’t do the right thing to save their own lives — I’m just not able to do the drive. I’ve never been a fan of long drives, but when you can’t turn your neck left, it’s hard. And on top of that my bad knee (my driving knee no less) just makes the trip too painful. That leaves flying.

So, no big deal, after being nagged to death to do something I don’t want, I called to check into plane reservations. Now, as everyone knows, the airlines all cut flights from their schedules. That’s been in the papers repeatedly. By reducing seats available on a route, they increase the average ticket price. Popular routes such as Miami to New York are largely unaffected because when you have 3 or 4 flights an hour a few less planes don’t matter. Other routes don’t fare (PUN!) as well apparently.

So, rather than bother Karen about what I thought would be a $150 ticket (I remember $29 tickets), I went to Expedia (a site I am not enamored of) and all the matches it gave me were for connections via Atlanta and Charlotte. Really! Leave here, fly to ATL/CLT and then back to Orlando, putting me in Orlando around 2 in the afternoon. Pretty good for a 1130am event. So, I reloaded and asked for non-stops only. There used to be, if you recollect, one or two flights per hour. There are less than eight total now. If I take the one early flight out and come back one of the last two of the day, the roundtrip fare is, get this, $988. Really. I could buy two tickets to Paris, France for less, just as an example. I could go to Las Vegas FIRST CLASS for less. And the airlines wonder why they’re always in financial trouble. More wrangling with complexities reduced the fare to around $685 — but there is NO way in hell I’m paying that much to go to Orlando. I tried the websites of American and Continental (the only two airlines still serving MIA-MCO non-stop) and got fares that were over $1100 on American and $980 on Continental.

There’s a few out of Fort Lauderdale, but the return options are complicated. I had asked Mom about one (requiring me to get up at 330am to get to FLL returning at 330pm from MCO which is a very tight schedule) but she never answered. Even that one was about $250 which is usurious. This concludes today’s rant.

And, to top it all off, I’m in a bit of a funk (not over this by any means) since Monday night. I’m trying to shake it, but I can’t. Long story that I’m not willing to share. Blech.

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