Saturday, September 11, 2010

Visit to Travis Air Force Base

In preparation of the move, I had to make arrangements with the nearest military installation's Transportation Office, which sent me to Travis Air Base yesterday. I was a little worried about getting on base, since I'm not a current DOD employee, but it turns out that my DOI ID carries a little weight, and I was armed with my travel orders, a passport, driver's license and all of my vehicle's current registration info. After signing in at the main gate, I was good to go.

My first stop was the outbound household goods office, which I found after making a few wrong turns along the way. Once there, I explained that I had been picked up by the Army and was looking to pack out. We arranged for our pack out to occur over several days in early October, and they began entering my info into the system. Then the system crashed. Then they found out that it might be a while before the crash was fixed. So they asked me to come back around lunchtime. I asked them for directions to the Commercial Travel Office (CTO), and off I went.

At the CTO, I booked our flight to Frankfurt, the nearest airport to Landstuhl. Things there went pretty smoothly and the customer service rep, Fran, was extremely friendly and helpful. She answered my questions about traveling with Jane, our cat, and went the extra mile in helping us arrange with the airlines for her to come with us. Fran even looked into several flights that could accommodate us having the cat with us for the entire journey. If traveling with pets is tough... traveling internationally with pets is a nightmare. As Fran was printing out our receipt for our tickets, I got a call from the household goods office. Apparently, they were told that the system would be crashed for the rest of the day, and that I'd have to come back to Travis AFB at a later date... ugh.

I decided to head back over to the Transportation Office again, just in case. Anyway, I was hoping they'd do the "outbound household goods debrief" with me so that I didn't have to come back at another time for that too. When I arrived, I found out that they were able to get into the system through someone else's computer, and that the crash wasn't really a crash after all. They were being fed bad info by the people that run the system. It happens. I was so stoked to find out that we were in the system, that I didn't care about the wait. The airman on duty gave me a one on one debrief for my troubles, to prevent me from having to come back next Wednesday. Awesome!

So now, our pack out dates and our flight are scheduled. But it's still only the beginning...

No comments:

Post a Comment