Flying to Europe
I moved a step closer to Europe yesterday by finally booking my airline flight. My big thing was that I was willing to pay full fare if I was able to use my frequent flyer miles to upgrade to business class. This meant flying on Northwest, Delta, or one of the airlines affiliated with them. Well, after I finally found a travel agency that was open in Huntsville on a Saturday, I managed to book a flight on Northwest AND get the upgrade to business class to both sides of the pond.
For reasons that are probably easy to figure out if I gave the matter some thought, Delta does not accept NWA's WorldPerks miles, even though Delta just bought NWA. No problem: the NWA flight was cheaper anyway. The only downside of the flight is the return portion. Outbound, I fly to Memphis and then head to Amsterdam from there. The return flight is Paris (CDG) to Minneapolis, then Minneapolis-Memphis, and THEN Memphis-Huntsville. The other icky part is that I leave Paris around noonish, arrive in the States around 4 p.m., and finally get home around 9 p.m. Sort of like a time travel episode of Star Trek, as written by a sadistic airline scheduler. There has to be a way to get an overnight flight back to the U.S. doesn't there? Well, maybe it won't be so bad. If I sleep in that day, get to the airport, and stay awake through the flights, I should be able to get home and crash hard...just in time to go into work the next day. Oy.
Anyhow, I'm jazzed. After half a dozen years of shoehorning myself into a bunch of RJs, it'll be a frickin' novelty to be able to sit in a decent seat and not pay $5 for a cocktail. I might even learn to like airline travel again, even if it means getting to the airport two hours before flight time. Might have to buy that Kindle. I could be doing a lot of reading on these flights.
I suppose the next thing I'll need to do is to start nailing down what I need to pack--Rick Steeves provides a recommended list--try to pack all that stuff into the suitcase, and then see how far I can walk with it before collapsing under the weight. Oh yeah, and I need to learn how to wash my clothes on the road. Yippee.