Brooke and I are finally headed to Zambia! We leave on Thursday, February 4 and will be there for 3 weeks. (Missing the Superbowl. Luckily, the Vikings are not playing. I imagine that scene in Rainman where Tom Cruise pretends to be with the Nielsen tv ratings company so Dustin Hoffman's character can watch The People's Court as Brooke and I go door to door in Luanshya trying to find the game, when I start shouting 8 minutes 'til kickoff and have a breakdown.)
Many of you might remember that we were going to go to Zambia shortly after we arrived back in South Africa last September. Weel due to visa issues and passport problems that trip was delayed. Then due to Peace Corps issues it was delayed again. We finally got approval to go last week and we are really excited. We almost had one more delay when we called the airline to reschedule our tickets and they told us one of our flights was suspended! Brooke called the airline's main office and after being on hold for 10 minutes was told they don't know why the tickets were suspended, but if we went to the airport they could sort us out there. Brooke quickly asked what airport and the response was, "any airport." Surprised by this answer Brooke asked if the Kruger airport would work and again the agent said yes. So we quickly arranged to get out to Kruger airport (it is about as far from Hibbing to the Hibbing airport as it is from where we stay to the Kruger airport and the airports are similar in size.)
We got to the airport and found an amazing ticketing agent there. After giving our ticket information she said she would have to call the head office to find out why our tickets were suspended. We said we tried that and they told us to come to the airport! She called the head office and after being on hold for 10 minutes hung up! Then she pulled out 'the manual.' It was as thick as Gone With the Wind, with pages the size of a road atlas. She quickly started flicking through pages and typing on her keyboard, and after only about 5 minutes said she managed to get them unsuspended. All that was left was rebooking and we were good. She started typing again after asking us dates and times then asked why we weren't able to travel the first time. We told her why and she said, "Well, I don't want you to have to pay for the rebooking so I will just put funeral." She finished up and gave us our new itinerary and showed us the rebooking fee was supposed to be R650 per ticket (about$200 for both tickets). We were amazed! Let's just say the customer service we have come to expect in South Africa was less than stellar so when something like this happens you are truly amazed! Not sure how often we will get to post while we are there, but I'm sure we will post when we can.
We would like to thank all of you who continue to pray for us during our time here in Africa. When things like the customer service miracle happen it is clear that we have many people praying for us!
4 years ago