Monday: fly to PDX. Only uneventful leg of the trip.
Friday, 2PM PDT: arrive at PDX for 3:30 flight on UAL. Find out equipment for PDX-DEN leg is late, and I'd miss my connection. They want to rebook me in such a way that I'd arrive here Saturday, 4PM CDT. Fuck that.
2:30PM: after talking to travel agent and UAL ticket agent, I'm now booked on America Worst, PDX-LAS-AUS. I now have a buttload of time to kill.
~5:00PM: after 2 beers, some good soup and outstanding rosemary cheese bread, I have to leave Gustav's because there's nowhere to plug my laptop in.
6:30PM: After a good dark beer at some mexican bar where I could actually plug in, I'm on my way to make sure that my LAS-AUS flight isn't going to get screwed when I run into davidfetter. He forces me to have another beer at gunpoint. I comply (Dos Equis Amber instead of Black Butte Porter... wtf was I thinking?)
7:00PM: Back at Gustav's for dinner (excellent chicken schnitzel) and yet another beer (this time only a pint, no more 20-22 ouncers).
8:15PM: Finally depart PDX 20 minutes late thanks to America Worst's crappy steward/esses that take forever trying to pack everyone's shit into overheards instead of just checking it.
10:40PM: Land at LAS and haul ass to make my 10:48PM connection. Get to the gate to find out the fucking captain isn't expected to be there until midnight.
~12:45AM: After some sleep, $3 wasted on the slots, the captain finally shows up and we get on the plane.
~1:05AM: We take on some extra fuel. Flight crew announces that "there were a bunch of paperwork errors" and something about how thanks to changing weather (holy shit, weather can change?!!?!) there was now a broken layer at AUS so we had to have enough fuel to be able to divert. IIRC, there are different requirements (by about 30 minutes) for fuel reserves depending on the WX at your destination. In other words, America Worst gambled that they could save having to haul 30 minutes of fuel to AUS and lost. On a 2:30 flight. What's most troubling about this is... WTF would we have done had we been delayed into AUS? Probably diverted immediately.
1:30AM: Heidi sends me a SMS welcoming me home (I should have just landed). In reality, we've just started to taxi.
6:30AM CDT: Finally arrive at the gate. Luckily I managed to get about 90 minutes sleep on the flight. Unluckilly for the poor suckers who will be flying on that plane today, the equipment is already an hour behind schedule... and it's only 6:30 in the morning.
Oh, another fun tidbit... the cover for the emergency exit handle above my head (I was at least exit row) kept falling open because the duct tape (yes, duct tape) they used to keep it closed was getting old.