Friday, June 24, 2016

Our Trip Home: Picking up the Cat

After waiting in line at immigration that took forever - it seemed, we finally arrived at the luggage pick-up.  Every time we have come to the luggage pick up in this airport the turn styles are already turned off and the luggage is just sitting on the floor in a messy and hard to navigate maze.  

Steve went to see about getting a cart, which costs you.  We had some quarters but not $4.00 worth.  It does take bills, which we had a few and your debit or credit card.  After messing with one machine someone was kind enough to tell him this one never works and to use the next one.

The rest of us started working on the maze of suitcases to find ours.  After finding one, a Qatar Airline worker noticed which suitcase we found and then informed us the rest where right over there (pointing to the spot).  They had noticed our markings and had started putting our suitcases together.  We took a count and only had to find one more.  A very nice blessing after a long wait in immigration.

I then proceeded to ask her if she knew about the cat and where to pick her up.  She knew all about the cat and told us we had to go to Freight to pick her up.  It was at the same place as British Airways.  She really didn't have directions, just to follow signs.

So we met my dad and loaded up the truck and piled in.  We left the Airport and circled around to enter it again and read signs, trying to find the Freight area.  Steve saw a building with the word Freight on it in big letters, but we were already past the turn for it and had to navigate all the way around to the exit of the airport and circle back to the entrance again.  We still made a wrong turn and so lap three of the airport happened!  This time we make it to the building.

 Steve goes inside and was gone for quite awhile.  He comes out to report that it is mostly an empty build and he has walked the whole length of it upstairs and down.  He stood in line at the customs place that was inside there to ask where he should go.  They sent him to talk to the guard letting trucks in a gate at the end of the parking lot.  They in turn sent him back into the building using door 8.  They sent him back to the drop off counter of Qatar Airways.  OK, that doesn't make any sense but not knowing where else to go we again begin another lap of the airport.

The Qatar Airways drop off counter was very helpful, with very specific directions.  In the end, if the lady at the luggage pickup had used several airline names we might have found the place the first time.  We were seeing the building with the word Freight on it thinking that is where we needed to go, but we did come to sign with airway names on it.  Using British Airways as a guide took us to the wrong place.

So we arrived at the right place and indeed the cat is inside this building.  Now we need to take these papers to a customs officer and get them stamped and pay more money!!!  A customs office is 20 minutes drive toward downtown Philly?!?!?  WHAT???  We are tired of driving around, we are getting hungry, it is almost lunch time, and you don't have a customs office at the airport?!?!?!?   Then Steve remembers the customs line in the first building he was in and asked if he couldn't go there.  The answer, you can try but I don't think so.

Well, we tried and succeeded!!! Steve came out with paper work stamped only five minutes later.  The line that wasn't moving when he was there before was gone.  Yes!  Our spirits all became happy that the end of this airport visit was in sight.  We went back to the freight office, gave them the signed papers, paid the money, and picked up the cat.  We happily left the Philly airport behinds us and started our drive home to Lancaster Co. PA.

No comments: