Okay, so three weeks ago I made booking arrangements to ship a cat I was tentatively taking care of to her new home, which is three hours away from where I live. I booked it, and all seemed fine. Aside from the fact that the kid who booked it found out I was coming in to his office area on friday when I have to pick up my dog from the live handling desk in Toronto airport. He insisted I take his number and call him when I got in so he could take me "clubbing." Uh huh, yeah.
So anyways the people on the other end decide the date isn't good for them, so I call again a few days later to rebook it. It turns out the kid who booked it entered a whole different city where I would be dropping off the cat. His buddy was the one to take the call, and when I mentioned his friend had tried to pick me up he laughed and put me on hold to razz the other guy about it. Then we find out he had to enter the wrong departure city THREE times when he originally made the plan. The two cities in question sound nothing alike, either. It's a mystery how he ended up with the other one. So anyways I finally get done re-booking it, all is well, the second guy then tries to pick me up as well, claiming him AND his friend will take me "clubbing." In order to save hassle I informed him I was an aspiring lesbian and had no interest in clubbing with them. Then he told me they would take me to all the hot gay bars. What's worse is these two will be there when I have to pick up my dog the day I fly. I'm going to have
to run into one of these dolts!
They asked me how much the cat weighed. I told them. They gave me the dimensions of the kennel she would need, and informed me I would have to find one with metal bolts, or add them myself, apparently plastic ones just won't due. We all know how cats turn green and gain super feline strength when confined in a kennel, it seems metal is needed to hold them back from ripping out of the kennel and perhaps the entire aircraft as well. I had to order an airline approved kennel, it cost an arm and a leg. I then had to add metal bolts to it per their instructions.
Okay so they had told me to be two hours early or the cat would not get on the plane. Well her plane was set to leave at 10:00 am this morning, which meant I needed to be there by 8:00 am. Like a dolt I already packed and shipped my alarm clock to the new place. So I realised I would never get up on time to meet my ride if I didn't stay up all night. We get there at ten minutes to 8:00 and I'm thinking hey sweet, for once I am on time. Wrong. It turns out the place doesn't even open until 8:30 am. We end up having to wait around for a half an hour. Finally I take the cat in and this very portly and manly looking woman sternly informs me that they will not accept this kennel, because she (the cat) has to lower her head a half an inch to sit up straight in it. Great. Awesome. Thanks.
Off to the pet store we race, to see if they had a larger one in the same shipment. Well, the pet store doesn't open until 9:30 am. Scratch that. We head over to Canadian Tire. I found a kennel in there that was a medium size, instead of the small size we'd already bought. Only it doesn't have metal bolts, OR plastic bolts that I can even swap for metal bolts. It has flat snappy things to hold it together. However the tag says "airline approved." So I buy it, thinking if they refuse it I can just return it. We race back to the airport and I show them the new kennel. They tell me right away sure they will accept it. I am baffled of course and ask them WHY then was there such a hassle over having metal bolts? They tell me they started accepting these kind recently because they say airline approved and so many people show up with them that they couldn't be bothered to deal with the angry customers any more. Okay, fine. I wish someone had told me this two weeks ago, but fine. So I go put the cat in the new kennel, and come back to the desk. Great, it is now 9:30 am and her flight leaves in a half hour. They inform me she will be missing this flight and I will have to re-book her on to the next flight out.
Of course, sending in the booking order to the live animals desk in Toronto takes an HOUR for a response with a price so I can pay and get the hell out of there finally. Just in case you were wondering, hanging out in a tiny airport with a 6 yr old girl and a mewling feline is not all that much fun. I left a message on the machine of the woman picking her up, I still have no clue whether or not she got the message or not. Worst case scenario she misses the flight, goes home to check the message and has to drive all the way back to the airport an hour away to pick up the cat. That poor, poor feline. I feel SO guilty. I know it will be better for her, she's an old cat and she is going to a farm with no other cats or dogs and no kids to pester her. She will have run of the house and be able to chase mice in the barn until her little heart is content. But I still feel bad. I had grown sort of attached to her, I guess.
Anyhow, I'm really not sure why Air Canada doesn't answer their phone with "We don't actually want your business, please prepare for us to dick you around mercilessly." It really seems that way to me.
I guess this was a rant, I needed to get it out. I still haven't slept, but the last of the boxes to be shipped will be going tomorrow, so I feel less anxious about that.