Here's an email expressing a travel agent's travails on handling senators' travels, and telling us we're all in deep trouble.
A friend has been a travel agent for over 30 Years. She says, of her 30 years of taking reservation requests from government officials, we are all in trouble now. Here's a few questions at the reservation desk that were asked by the following politicians:
Senator Tessie Oreta asked for an aisle seat so that her hair wouldn't get messed up by being near the window.
I got a call from ex-Mayor Joey Marquez, who wanted to go to Capetown. Explaining the length of the flight and passport information, he interrupted me with, "I'm not trying to make you look stupid, but Capetown is in Massachusetts ." Without trying to make him look like the stupid one, I calmly explained, "Cape Cod is in Massachusetts. Capetown is in Africa.".
Congressman Mark Lapid called, furious about a Florida package we did for him and tv star Kris Aquino. I asked what was wrong with the vacation in Orlando. He said he was expecting an ocean-view room. I tried to explain that was not possible since Orlando is in the middle of the state. He replied, "Don't lie to me. I looked in the map and Florida is a very thin state!" (so he expected to see the ocean on both sides of the hotel?!)
Senator Ralph Recto's popular wife asked, "Is it possible to see England from Canada?" I said, "No." She replied, "But they look so close on the map."
Senator Lito Lapid asked if he could rent a car in Dallas. I noticed he had only an hour lay-over in Dallas. When asked why he wanted to rent a car, he said, "I heard Dallas was a big airport, and we will need a car to drive between the gates to save time."
Senator Jinggoy Estrada called last week. He needed to know how it was possible that his flight from Detroit left at 8:20 a.m. and got into Chicago at 8:33 a.m. I tried to explain that Michigan was an hour ahead of Illinois, but he could not understand the concept of time zones. Finally, I told him the plane went very fast, and he bought that.
Congressman Ronaldo Zamora asked, "Do airlines put your physical description on your bag so they know whose luggage belongs to whom?" I said, "No, why do you ask?" He replied, "Well, when I checked in with the airline, they put a tag on my luggage that said FAT, and I'm overweight. I think that is very rude!" I looked into it and explained the city code for Fresno, Californiais (FAT) and the airline was just putting a destination tag on his luggage.
Former presidentiable now tv star Eddie Gil inquired about a trip package to Hawaii. After going over all the cost info, he asked, "Would it be cheaper to fly to California and take the train to Hawaii?"
I just got off the phone with Senator Bong Revilla who asked, "How do I know which plane to get on?" I asked him what exactly he meant, to which he replied, "I was told my flight number is 823, but none of these planes have numbers on them."
VP Noli De Castro asked, "I need to fly to Pepsi-Cola , FL. Do I have to get on one of those twin engine planes?" I asked if he meant fly to Pensacola, FL, on a commuter plane. He said, "Yeah, whatever!"
Congressman Dilangalen called and had a question about the documents needed to fly to China. I reminded him he needed a visa. "Oh, no I don't. I've been to China many times and never had to have one of those." I double checked and sure enough, his stay required a visa. When I told him this, he said, "Look, I've been to China four times and everytime they accepted my American Express!"
Senator Miriam Defensor called to make reservations, "I want to go from Chicago to Rhino, New York." The agent said, "Are you sure that's the name of the town?" "Yes, what flights do you have?" replied the lady. After some searching, the agent came back with, "I'm sorry, ma'am, I've looked up every airport code in the country and can't find a Rhino anywhere." The lady retorted, "Oh, don't be silly! Everyone knows where it is. Check your map!" The agent scoured a map of the state of New York and finally offered, "You don't mean Buffalo, do you?" "That's it! I knew it was a big animal," she said.