Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Merry-go-runaround

Well ladies and gentlemen, I am once again off on a grand adventure. Unlike the last time I'm going to be out with plenty of co-workers, which is good because they're great people and because the weight of this trial (and it is a big one) does not fall on me alone.

The last trial I went (by myself) never really got off the ground. It was sort of a last minute affair given to me on a Thursday morning. By Thursday afternoon I was on a plane out of O'Hare. Then of course I had an hour and a half (or longer, I don't remember) drive to the plant location where I checked into a hotel for the night. The next day I went to the plant where the parts I needed for the trial were supposed to be arriving by UPS next day air.

Remember Murphy's Law? The parts didn't show up. So I got the tracking number and started calling UPS. The parts were stuck several hundred miles away in a terminal. Or so we thought. The frustrating part was that calling UPS did almost no good. The automated system will only tell you that the package is "in transit" and the operator could only tell me that the package had made it to Louisville Kentucky. There was no information on whether it was still in that location or shipped out or even in one piece.

So after several hours of not getting anywhere, there was little choice but to call it quits, load up the rental car, and make the trip back to the airport where I flew back to the busiest airport in the world, got in my car and drove home through rush hour traffic.

It wouldn't have been so bad if I could have reported a success but thanks to UPS that wasn't possible. Moral of the story, don't trust UPS (and several other companies) when they say "next day."

Here's hoping this trial goes better.

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