For those of you who don’t know, the company I work for (Agathon Group) made a wonderful and excellent decision to bring all of us out to Hawaii for a work trip and conference. Since I work from wherever there’s an internet connection, I thought “why on Earth would I go to Hawaii for only 4 days? Let’s go for a month!” I eventually settled on 10 days.
So we woke up crazy early on October 1st, 2009, and hit the road to head to O’hare. Clearly there’s nothing exciting to tell at this point, so I’ll just skip ahead.
We had a layover in Salt Lake City, which is quite a lovely city, and flying into Salt Lake is even more lovely.
That’s Ron (my flying buddy) next to the window.
The city is surrounded by mountains, so it’s quite beautiful anywhere you look.
And while in the airport, I did visit the designated smoker’s area
which is about the saddest looking place in the world. Nothing will make you want to quit like this room.
And as per my usual, when we took back off, I took pictures (I love flying).
That little lake in the distance is a perfect circle. I thought that was neat
That is San Francisco, and I linked to the full size image, as you can see Alcatraz and the Golden Gate in that picture.
Once you pass San Fran, it’s actually quite a boring flight, as it turns out that the Pacific Ocean is quite big. And while I kept hoping to glance out and see an island like in Lost, I never saw anything very interesting. I guess I would just have to wait to get to the island where they filmed Lost.
Upon taking off, Ron and I noticed that we had our own personal touch screen TVs in front of us (well, it was really hard not to notice this). Not only that, but these TVs were filled with wonderful movies that we could watch at any point on this flight for free. Amazing, we thought. So we started up Land of the Lost, and after being interrupted by 15 solid minutes of off and on announcements, our movie began. We got maybe 15 minutes into the movie, when we heard an announcment that they were going to be restarting the system. Seemed weird since everything appeared to be working fine, but whatever, we’ll just pick the movie back up where we left off.
We watched a linux bootup screen (Ron took a picture. We’re kind of nerds), and when the system finally came back up, there were no movies. No TV shows. No hopes and dreams. After about 4 more attempts to reboot the system, movies still failed to return. Luckily we had laptops with entertainment, but we were still quite disappointed (especially when we heard all the stories later from everyone else who had working movies).
Couple quick airline observations (as I’m prone to do – “what’s the dealy with airline food?”):
– There was a no smoking sign above an ashtray near the bathroom. I realize this observation isn’t new, but what I’m wondering is, it’s been a LONG time since smoking has been allowed in airplanes. How, have we not remodeled the inside of this plane at some point in that time and removed the ashtray? Why is that still there?
– When I went into the smallest bathroom I have ever been in (even by airplane standards), I noticed a little light-up sign that showed me where the exit was. This is the one place in the world where I am absolutely positive how to get out.
Finally we arrived in Hawaii (about 40 or 50 degrees warmer than Chicago), and just to remind us that we’re in Hawaii, to get to the terminal from our gate, we’re required to walk outside, and immediately the song “Hawaii” by The Beach Boys popped into my head, and has not left since.
This is inside the airport, mind you.
We were greeted by Alan and his son Toshi, and were promptly laid (I think I’m spelling that right). Another bizarre thing at this point was the fact that we had been traveling all day, and it wasn’t even 3pm yet. At this point, I lost all sense of what time was, and just decided to stay up and hang out until about 10pm, when I promptly collapsed.
And as a constant reminder that we were in fact in Hawaii, here’s the view from Alan’s balcony
I can certainly think of worse things to see when you look outside.