Monthly Archives: September 2011

Dear Continental Airlines

Dear Continental Airlines,

First off let me say that I really don’t normally get upset about travel SNAFU’s.   There are so many minute details that all have to come together to make for flawless travel that it’s pretty rare when it happens.    Not to mention having to remove shoes and jackets, and still requiring the extra Hottie hair pat down after the cosmic ray scanner.   When I was little, traveling was fun and kind of glamorous, now it’s all about getting from point A to point B with as little hassle as possible.   So I try really hard to be patient and just go with the flow.

On my recent trip to New Orleans with Iva Handfull we traveled via Continental Airlines to the New Orleans Burlesque Festival. With the exception of the hour long baggage drop at SeaTac the trip down was a breeze with no delays and our luggage made it no problems.    The trip back proved a little more problematic.   It started out innocently enough and we got to the bag drop, all checked in online.  The line wasn’t too bad and we get to the counter and our luggage is whisked away.  It wasn’t until we were heading to security that we realize the lady didn’t ask for our ID.  I’m pretty sure I have ID checked whenever I check luggage, and Iva agreed as well.   We breeze through security(with the exception of the enhanced Hottie hair pat down and subsequent cosmic rays) and wait to board.

We were about forty minutes late taking off from NOLA which then caused us to miss our connecting flight in Houston.    After much running around from Terminal C to B, back to C and then landing at Terminal E (and a VERY nice Alaska Airlines agent-wish we’d flown Alaska!) I was informed by a surly Continental/United gate agent that I had to check in with Continental/United customer service.  We head to customer service and the agent tells us that there is room on the next flight out at 9:05pm and we’re all booked.  Yay!   We ask about our luggage and were informed that it would go out on the next flight as well.  Double yay!  We board the plane and land in Seattle on time.

We head to the baggage claim and wait.   And wait.   And wait.   No luggage so we head to the Delayed Baggage Information agent desk which is through the hobbit door and takes you into the Land Of Lost Luggage.    Without saying hi or can I help you? the customer service agent holds out her hand and says, “baggage ticket”.  Oh, that’s how you want to play, huh?   I whipped out and slapped down my baggage ticket and she informs me that our luggage should be landing in Houston shortly.  Huh?   I thought it was already in Houston?   She told me it hadn’t even left NOLA on the correct flight in the first place.   Three huge suitcases containing our burlesque costumes and the entire inventory of ties that we took to vend at NOBF.   We are issued a Delayed Baggage Information file reference number and told that it our bags should land in Seattle in the AM and they would be couriered out to us.

The next day, I call the Continental Airlines Baggage Resolution Center (aka The Land Of Lost Luggage) and am informed that my bag will be landing in Seattle at 1pm and will go out on the 3pm truck for delivery.  I confirm my address and am told it will be delivered between 3pm and 9pm.    10pm rolls around and nothing to I once again call the Resolution Center.   The agent that time acted shocked that I didn’t have it because according to the courier company it was delivered.   Uh no, it hasn’t been.   She contacts the courier company and they tell her it’s on the truck for delivery.   I ask about compensation and the agent said I could get some ‘vouchers’.  I tell her that I just want my $35 fee back that I paid for the bag and she tells me that’s not possible.   Midnight rolls around and I finally just call the courier company directly and the lady that answered tells me the  drivers said they couldn’t deliver it that night because they all had to be back by 2:30am to pick up bags at hotels.   What the what?   I have no clue what she was talking about but she promises my bag will be delivered between 9-11am the next morning.   Because it’s now a work day for me, I tell them they need to change the delivery address to my place of work since that’s where I’ll be during the ‘guaranteed delivery’ window.

I get to work and the hours roll by.   At 10:30 I call the courier service again and am told that the lady last night gave me the wrong window, it’s supposed to be 9am to 1pm.   I inform her that my place of business closes from 1-2 for lunch so the driver would have to make sure it was before 1:00.   I ask the agent to let the driver know that we were closed at that time and she assured me she would.    12:50 rolls around and no suitcase.  This time, just for shits and giggles I call the Airlines Baggage Resolution Center again and thankfully the agent I got this time was the only person during the whole FUBAR situation that seemed to know what she was doing.  I don’t know her last name, but her first name was Donna and she was an angel. I’d like to take a moment to thank Donna and Continental/United should thank her as well because she single handedly kept me as a customer.  She was appalled that I didn’t have my bag, immediately contacted the driver of the courier company who assured her he’d have it to me by 1pm.   Donna told me to call her after I got my bag back and she’d make sure my compensation was significantly higher than my $35 bag fee.

1:05 rolls around and I clock out and we lock up for lunch.    At 1:35 my cell phone rings and it’s the delivery driver with my bag.  He tells me that he was never informed that we closed at 1pm for lunch and agrees to wait until we’re back in the office at 2pm.   At 2:20 he shows up and I’ve got my bag back.   I call Donna and she issues me a generous travel voucher good for a year on Continental/United Airlines.

Congratulations Continental for the single worst luggage experience I’ve ever had.     It’s actually quite impressive that although my luggage was never technically ‘lost’ there didn’t seem to be a single person that could deliver one suitcase 45 minutes north of Seattle in less than two days.    Bravo.

Violette Market Diablo Canyon 2011 Reviews

I placed my order on September 9th and received it September 15th (unfortunately I was out of town all week-end!).   So far, I’ve enjoyed what I’ve tried.

Haunted Corn Maze

Smoked sandalwood, sun-scorched corn husks, golden corn clusters, cranberries, warm resins, and sweet wisps of vanilla dust clouds from skeletal footprints.

I got this last year as a room spray and loved it.   I can’t remember if it was available as a perfume oil last year or not so I decided to pick it up this year.

In bottle: Soft and warm.

Wet on skin:  Hmmm…it really does smell like corn husk and I’m not sure I want to smell like corn!

Dry on skin:  Oh, this is really nice.   It’s softened into a really soft amber that’s just gorgeous.  You can definitely smell a soft resin and vanilla.  This would be a really nice unisex scent.

Verdict:  So glad I bought a bottle of this unsniffed!

Mr. Morgan’s Cidermill

 Autumn apple cider, pressed black apples, amber wood, orchard pear, aged cedar wood, vintage patchouli leaf, blood cedar wood, and sweet vetiver.

In bottle:   Apples, but not green apple.

Wet on skin:  It smells like a woody apple, and I’m worried that it’s going a bit craft store apple-ish.

Dry on skin:  Oh, this is niiiiiiice.  A lovely dark apple scent.  If you like Black Apple or Witches Apple it’s a safe bet that you’ll like this.

Black Moon Saloon

Musky desert air, polished dark wood, Chinese Weeping cypress, dirty flasks of vanilla spirits, hand-crafted raw alcohol infused with white sassafras root, glass decanters of arid Red Eye fire water, evaporated Coffin Varnish, and cloudy Sweet Cactus Wine.

In bottle:  Musky and almost medicinal.

Wet on skin:  Sasafrass!  You can definitely smell the polished dark wood.

Dry on skin:  Yum, I’m so glad I bought a bottle of this!   It’s dark and dirty and really super sexy.    As this dries it really softens up and the medicinal smell goes away.   This scent reminds me of the type of woman who would keep her boots on while she….well, you know.   Bottle worthy for sure!

Ghost Town

A distant bonfire, wind-dried red and brown autumn leaves, tart orchard apple, smoldered Cathouse stage, the haunting wail of a ghost train, and the diabolic laughter of the dead softened by a touch of sweet white cranberry.

In bottle:  In the bottle this smells just like After Dark which is one of my favor

We on skin:  Now I can smell apples, and a little bit of wood and a little of the smokey bonfire comes out.

Dry on skin:  I”m afraid the bonfire may start smelling a bit leathery which doesn’t normally work for me.  I’m going to age this and try it again.  I have a hunch this will age beautifully.

Miss Julia Star, The Cathouse Kitties

Sweet red apple, coriander and cardamom spiced cake with an apple cider glaze.

In bottle:   Sweet and fruity.

Wet on skin:  Yummy, yummy spiced apple with just a bit of cardamom.

Dry on skin:  This dries down to a really pretty and sexy scent.   I can still smell the apple and it’s got a definite cider edge to it with just enough soft spice.   No Yankee Candle smell.  This is most definitely a feminine scent and much softer and sweeter than Mr. Morgan’s Cidermill.

Verdict:  Glad I snagged a bottle!   So far, I’ve enjoyed all the Cathouse Kitties scents.

Diablo Canyon Root Cellar-Room Spray

Plump pumpkin, squash blossoms, orchard apples, cucumber vines, late summer black raspberries, sarsaparilla root, cinnamon stick, woodland pear, black plum, smoked bundled wood, cold damp soil, and white root-covered river rocks.

I buy one of the room sprays each year.   I really like this one so far.   It’s nice and soft without being perfumy or wanting their houses to smell like air fresheners.   The Haunted Corn Maze that I bought last Halloween lasted me a year!

Diablo Canyon is a limited edition so if you’re interested in something go check it out here:

http://www.violettemarket.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=3_23