Tag Archives: first class

To L.A.

I was up at 3 AM because I couldn’t sleep. My alarm was set for 4 AM, but there I was, awake at 3 AM and so I watched and episode of The West Wing before heading into the shower.

The car was there at 4:30 AM to pick me up and we headed off for Dulles airport. The roads were empty and I was at the airport at 5:15 AM. The airport was empty as well. It took only 10 minutes to go from the curb to the gate, and for those of you who know Dulles, that includes the short ride in the mobile lounge to the C-gates.

Turns out the Red Carpet Club at Dulles doesn’t open until 6 AM, so I sat around until it opened and then spent about 25 minutes there. I had a light breakfast and then left to board the plane. I boarded at 6:30 and not 5 minutes later, we had to debark the plane because of an issue with the navigational equipment. We were told there would be a 40 minute delay, but 10 minutes later, we were boarded again, and this time, without incident. The flight left 10 minutes late, at 7:10 AM.

The flight itself wasn’t too bad. I upgraded to first class. I spent some time talking to the person sitting next to me (who was quite talkative). She was from Hawaii and she was returning home. I managed to get a little sleep, too, but not much. I also added about 800 words to Graveyard Shift, not as much as I had hope to get done on the plane, but better than nothing. My word count now stands at 18,155 words.

I arrived in L.A. at 9:50 AM. Doug and Rachel were waiting for me when I got there. I hopped in the minivan and we headed to Oxnard. It took us a little over an hour.

Since then, we’ve been sitting around, waiting for he11o_sunshine and stubiebrother to get here. Mom was here when we got here, and so was Ruby and Carson. Carson is so cute–he is to Doug what “Mini-me” is to Doctor Evil. Even their facial expressions are an identical match!

Mom and Dad have had a lot of work done on their house. It’s been painted, there’s new carpeting, and new base-boards. It looks great.

My text-messaging seems to be delayed. Kelly wasn’t getting my text messages and sometime around 1 PM, she called me. This is significant because up to this point, we’d never talked to each other on the phone. It became a kind of game between us–a streak if you will. And so when I saw her calling, my first words when I answered the phone were, “You broke the streak!”

Ever other year, we have a “non-traditional” Thanksgiving dining, and this is one of those years. We’re having crab legs and prime rib for dinner.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Upgrade confirmed

I got an email from United this morning indicating that my first class upgrade on my flight to L.A. on Thursday morning was confirmed. Usually, I don’t have to wait until the last minute because I use miles, but this time, I used some of the upgrade credits I get for being a frequent flier, and with Premier status, you don’t find out if you got your upgrade until 48 hours within your flight time.

Observations from 36,000 ft

It is 10 PM Eastern time and I am sitting in seat 2B in the First Class cabin of United 307 from Baltimore, Maryland to Los Angeles, California. I have been sitting here for just shy of four hours and I have exactly two hours to go, if everything is on time. I am bored out of my mind. I thought I would take this opportunity to list some observations.

1. Looking around an airport terminal, you can always tell the most important people by the thickness of their cellular phones. The most important people have the thickest phones. They have to be thick to hold the extended life battery pack so that they can be on the phone all of the time. That’s how important they are.

1a. The most important people in the airport terminal also walk around with those ridiculous-looking BlueTooth headsets. This is a corrolary of #1 above.

2. There are two places in which it is particularly inconvenient to get a stomach ache: stuck in traffic, or stuck at 35,000 feet.

3. If you are ever stuck at 35,000 feet with a stomach ache and the flight attendant offers you an ice cream sundae with chocolate syrup and whipped cream, you should refuse it. Accepting the dish of ice cream only makes matters worse.

4. First Class on United is not what it used to be. The napkins used to be cloth. Now they are thick paper.

5. Most people who fly First Class on United have probably upgraded using miles or upgrade credits. No one in their right mind would actually pay for this.

6. I like airplane bathrooms. They bring out the claustrophillia in me.

7. On United, you can listen to air traffic control on channel 9 on your headset. On long flights like this, it seems that no matter how often I check air traffic control to see how we are progressing, we always seem to be somewhere over Kansas.

8. No one in First Class seem to be using laptops. However, everyone in coach seems to be working. I’m not sure what this says, but it seems somehow significant.

9. If there is so much more leg room in First Class, then why do my legs feel cramped up?

10. Laptop battery power decreases in inverse proportion to my level of boredom. As I get increasingly bored, my laptop seems to run–