--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Friday, April 18, 2008

LAX-LHR-IST

Hello? Is this thing on? Where am I?

That was one looong day of travel. We arrived at LAX early Wednesday evening and didn't finally touch the ground in Istanbul until midnight Thursday/Friday.

We flew American Airlines from Los Angeles to London and the crowd on board was unusually rough. Perhaps rough isn't quite the right word: obnoxious may be a better fit. Several passengers believed they were flying Ugly American Airlines and broke some major rules of packed airplane etiquette. One man started using the air phone while most people had started sleeping. He shouted at the top of his lungs:

"DUDE! NO, I'M ON THE F***ING PLANE RIGHT NOW!!!... I DON'T KNOW... OVER THE MIDWEST OR SOMETHING... I'M NOT S***ING YOU!!!"

Then there was the woman who sat behind us and loudly told some disinterested French woman her life story. On the rare occasion where she asked a question, I heard the following exchange:

American Woman: SO, WHY ARE YOU TRAVELING? I HOPE IT'S SOMETHING FUN!!!

French Woman: My father is sick. He may be dying.

American Woman: I'VE SUFFERED SOME LOSSES IN MY LIFE AS WELL, AND I CAN TELL YOU IT'S EASIER TO DEAL WITH WHEN YOU GET OLDER.

She was probably about 30 years younger than the French woman.

Once on the ground in London, we got a chance to see Heathrow's controversial Terminal 5. The multi-billion dollar facility opened amid chaos and widespread reports of lost luggage a few weeks ago. A YouTube video mocking the terminal has become a sensation in the UK.

We didn't suffer any lost luggage, and actually thought the bathrooms were pretty cool (the hand dryer must have been powered by a jet engine). But we did have to deal with circling the English countryside before we landed and waiting on the tarmac before our connecting flight took off again. Our combined delays totalled about two hours. I've travelled through Heathrow about a half dozen times now and have never connected without some kind of delay. I'd rather not travel through that airport again.

But now we're in Turkey and we were greeted with some good news. America's approval rating has surged to 20%, up from 7% just a few months ago. Yahoo! Now only one in five hates us!

But enough of my yapping, it's time to see Istanbul. We had a late night driving tour after we arrived. Now I'm treating my jet lag with liberal doses of Turkish Pepsi (mmmm, real sugar). Once we get moving, I really want to show my Crispo bars the Blue Mosque.

Pictures to follow.

Labels: ,

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner