I always tell F that I have a travel angel because even when things go awry and it seems like I may find myself suddenly stranded somewhere, some kind person appears out of nowhere and makes my day.

Case in point: When I booked my flight to Geneva I was hoping to leave Miami on Thursday and arrive in Geneva on Friday to take advantage of the weekend. However, what I really did was book a flight that left Thursday, had a day-long layover in London, and got to Geneva on Saturday morning (typical me).

I was already mentally and otherwise prepared to spend a day in London; I had looked up what Indian restaurant to go to, booked a basic hotel room to stay in, etc. Come Thursday, though, I show up to the airport at around 6:30 to find (not surprisingly) that I had to pay an extra charge for my overweight bag(s). Virgin Atlantic weighs your carry-on, too (beware!). After I shifted the extra weight to one bag I went over to another representative at a separate counter to pay for that one bag.

I ask her, “Will I have to pay for the bag again when I go check in for my connecting flight in London?”

She says yes because I will be traveling again 24 hours after the first flight. Then she asks me why I am even staying in London for so long in the first place. After I tell her it was a mistake on my part when I booked the ticket she says, “Well, let me see what I can do for you. There has to be a flight to Geneva for tomorrow.”

The poor woman battled endlessly with a recalcitrant system that would not allow her to either change my connecting flight and check me in or check my bag all the way to Geneva. Some phone calls and a hand-written bag tag later (some thirty minutes or more later, mind you), she tells me that I’ll be arriving in Geneva Friday afternoon, not Saturday morning – and to not worry about my bag because she would see to it that it was re-tagged and arrived with me. When I boarded the plane I was realized that she had seated me in the row with the emergency exit – and all of the leg room you can imagine (no one sitting next to me either). Thank you, travel angel!

She was so lovely and caring and – best of all – terribly efficient. Not at all akin to the experience I’ve had in Geneva since my arrival. Here’s looking at you Swisscom…