I think by now, everyone is aware of the major flight delays this weekend, and into the coming days, at Chicago area airports.
After experiencing the delays for myself – in both directions – I was happy to have an on-time (but rescheduled) flight leaving O’Hare headed back to Washington Reagan. I was gate upgraded, being number 4 on the list. I was thrilled to be moved to First, because the plane was packed. Considering the next 2 DCA flights were canceled, I imagine everyone tried to move to this flight since it was still showing as on-time.
This flight is one of the new exemption routes, according to the new American Airlines First Class meal service standards.
Because of the lack of radar in the area due to the fire, flights have to fly low out of the airport, and continue low for the first few minutes, until they can climb to a safe altitude. Because of this, the amount of “standing time” during the flight is reduced, and the seatbelt sign is kept on longer.
That doesn’t stop AA from providing a meal service, though! My flight attendant, a young gal who clearly enjoyed her job, did the best she could in serving everyone. Funny, though, about 20 minutes prior to decent, she was still serving drinks and warm nuts. When the Captain came on to announce our approach to decent, she freaked out and realized that she still hadn’t started serving dinner yet. In a frantic rush, you could see her move as fast as she could, getting the meals out of the oven, plating them, and serving them. One of the Main Cabin flight attendant’s noticed the rush, and came to assist, but it was still a well-run service, despite the snafu.
Because of the fast paced service, and the lack of time, the lead attendant did forget to serve the bread with the meal (I had the chicken marsala), and also dessert.
As we touched down in DCA, you could still smell the cookies baking in the oven. It was such a tease!
According to one of the flight attendants, this might be a recurring problem on short-haul meal eligible routes from ORD over the next few days. If you’re in First Class, be prepared!
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