Travelling in the 20th Century

Of late I have been writing about the journey around the seven churches of Asia Minor in the 1st century AD. These have been various discoveries made while researching for the Apostle John series. They walked in those days.

Recently we have had our own trip, and complications. Please let me share with you…

time zone map

My husband and I left home in Australia at ten am on Thursday 12 September… West Australian time. (GMT + 8). We had four and a half hours before the flight, but I had never driven there before and this gave me time to be lost, find my way, and drop the car off. Our flight with Emirates Airlines left at 14.30 and it was an eleven hour flight to Dubai. After a five hour wait at Dubai, our journey continued to London, about another eight hours. During this time we were flying backwards in time, and we landed in London on Friday morning. Unfortunately, (for us) Heathrow is a very busy airport and it took another 3 or so hours to get through the process in order to leave the airport. We were grateful for the assistance provided by the wheelchair people, but exhausted.

Since I am one of those people who cannot sleep on a plane, I was grateful to arrive at the hotel, but my normal sleeping difficulty was still present. I had hoped the change of time zones would help. Not really.

We were off again early Monday, flying backward in time to Washington. It was a smooth flight, but we landed to very long queues at custom and immigration. We arrived in the aftermath of the shooting and there was a lot of confusion.

Confusion reigned in my head too… and I made a costly mistake. We went to a hotel and settled in. That night was the first full sleep I had experienced since leaving Australia. In the morning my husband mentioned something about Tuesday… EEEEEKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!

My laptop was on West Aussie time, so was no help. My husband thought it was Tuesday.

“I hope not!”


“We are flying on to Nashville on Monday night.”

“I think it is Tuesday.”

I went to the office and asked the man on duty, “Would you tell me what day it is please?”

“Tuesday, 17th September.”date

He was very kind and gave me the number to ring United airlines. We needed to be in Nashville that day.

This is around where the nightmare started…

At first the woman on the other end said that it would cost $200 plus a $50 fee for reissuing the ticket. I was upset at having missed the plane but was glad she could get us on a flight.

Then she said she would have to recalculate.

A little later she came back and said that it would be $800… EACH. I asked how come it had jumped from $200 to $800. She told me it was because there were not many seats on the flight. I pointed out that it had cost me a little under $600 return for both of us when I had booked the tickets. She was not helpful, I was already upset… and this was devastating. My husband took over, gave the card details and she said she would send a receipt to my email address. An hour later it had not arrived and we were wondering if we had seats or not.

Well, it turned out we did, and an extremely helpful young woman on the counter checked us in early, put us on standby… and we arrived in Nashville at a reasonable hour.


The shock came the next day. Our credit card had been billed over $2,000!

Currently trying to make sense of all of this and obtain a refund from United Airlines but it is like running around in circles and going nowhere.

United Airlines do not respond to ‘contact us’ messages.

They tweeted me when I tweeted that I could not contact them

How do you explain in 140 characters?

Any hints on how to get a refund would be gratefully received.

Over $2,000 for a trip for two from DC to Nashville on a small plane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Tired and ‘stretched’,


PS Will let you know if we have any success


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