Saturday, January 13, 2007

a few perks of 16+ hours flying

Haven't yet grown wings, and am not a fool enough to consider myself neither Peter Pan nor Superman.

With much of disadvantages health-wise, I do like flying, do like going to airport, even if it's to the other side of hemisphere, half world around, with much time zone changes.

To my surprise, time rolled fast enough so that lca2007 which I thought would never come and didn't think I'd ever see has yet come again. Week of Jan 15, 2007.

After much rains and much sunshines, the snow began wednesday afternoon and continued 'til much later through the night, leaving a few inches of snow on my lawn. My previous experiences in SF and in Busan leaves me with much wonder and awe at this sight. Also leaves me with a bit of worry, as I've seen what it does to traffics and power systems, from christmas' blizzard.

We left little after noon, to catch 4:30pm flight, getting to the airport by 2pm, with all the precautions taken; toilleteries in clear bag, pack everything into carry-on bag and cookies for 2 hrs at Sea-tac and another 2hrs at LAX. Some research saved us fees as monorail to the airport isn't quite there yet, not until 2009, and left us with airport shuttle, bus, taxi or airport parking as options and we got this $5.95/day option for this place in sea-tac, less than a mile away from airport with free shuttle to the airport.

As much as I hate to admit, upgrade to business class is worth every single dime, for that long 14hour flight. A quick lunch at Sea-tac's newly renovated food court area, watching planes take off and land, and chatting with some stranger(s), a Horizon mechanic with much tales to tell for this time, kills 2 hours easily, and premium status due to much of flights in 2006 saves me the long wait line at TSA X-ray station. Getting to LAX, getting upgrades, getting food and all is just fine, with an unexpected surprise, seeing Comet McNaught with bare eyes.

Maybe I've not caught up with current events lately, though I'm sure I did. And, maybe I'm no astronomy geek, but I'd no idea about it, and it made the flight to LAX a lot more unique and cool, even without any upgrades to first class. I was lucky to be sitting on the right side of the plane, getting a full view. How tiny it looks. Would I have been able to see it on the ground? I doubt, seeing how tiny it is hundreds and thousands feet up in the air. above the cloud, the sunset looks glowing red, and there are a few stars visible in a size of dots way way above the sky, and in the midst of red glowingness is a small dot with a long tail, about an half inch long to the dot-to-blob size comet. Thanks to the flight attend distributing newspaper article xeroxes and pilots exlpaining, and thanks to be sitting on the right side of the plane, I got to see and learn much about McNaught, a pretty cool event.

LAX to Sydney, the 14hour flight to start at 9pm, of course got delayed 30min before boarding and another 30min-1hr after seating. How did I survive all this? And, 14hours of flying? Heh, service for business class and the leg space is pretty phenominal. I can arrane the seat and the leg supporter extension to make it almost vertical, maybe about 5-10 degrees off?, position to rest my leg and lay my head to sleeping position. 2-3 meals they serve are better than some of fine restaurant meals I've had, and definitely nothing to compare to the economy class meal. I got orange juice served upon seating, dinner composed of appetizer, warm roll, and steak dinner, along with dessert. warm nuts were also served for snacks and hot drinks were served in a real tea cup, and napkings were not paper but cloth, and warm towel also a real towel not paper one. I did sleep through midnight snack, but I knew to be better prepared for breakfast, from the experience I had with the dinner before. It's a pretty big meal, all tasty, thus don't eat appetizer as if it's a meal itself! Flight attendants are pleasant, and movie access and individual reading light, with things like toothbrush and toothpaste, not to mention all the special toilettery stuffs from H2O(facial cleanser and water sprayer).

Having had some bad flight experiences before, including that one time for 12hour flight from London where the guy in front of me in regular economy class having pushed his seat backward for the entire flight while the little girl behind me screamed, cried and kicked my seat, this is about as close to heaven as it gets.

McNaught and upgrade! Maybe it's a sign how much fun lca2007 would be. ^^


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