Sunday, September 9, 2012

On the road again: San Francisco, day 1

Getting up early is never going to be fun for me, and getting up early on a Sunday definitely sucks.  Still, that's what I did today, because my plane left in the late morning.

Aside from the problem, though, the rest of the trip went as well as one could ask.  Both flights were close enough to on time that I could manage, and on both of them I was lucky enough to get an upgrade.  Both also had bandwidth on offer, so I was able to work.

The most tense moment of the day came right before the second flight.  I had only 40 minutes in DFW to make my connection.  The first flight was actually early, but by the time the previous occupant of the gate made way for our plane, my connection time was down to 35 minutes--which meant the next flight would be boarding in five minutes.  I took the Skylink train to my next flight's distant gate, two terminals way, jogged to the gate, and found I'd gotten an upgrade.  That was good news, except that I had to see the gate agent to get my new ticket.  When I approached her, an older woman stepped in front of me, told me, "This is important," and proceeded to berate the gate agent about the lack of staff for her upcoming flight to Madrid--which didn't leave for four and a half hours.  The gate agent tried over and over to explain why no one was on duty yet for that flight, and meanwhile, they made the last call for my flight.  I talked to the other gate agent, who sent me back to the busy one. 

Finally, I said to the older woman, who was still furious and still talking, "Ma'am, I will miss my flight if I don't get to talk to that agent." 

"Humphf," the woman said.  "This is important."

The gate agent took pity on me, told the woman to wait, and we exchanged boarding passes.  It took maybe 15 seconds. 

As I left, the older woman said, "People these days."

I was consequently not in the best of moods when I boarded the plane, but I calmed myself and got down to work.  While I was doing email, I learned via a message from Jain that the memo chicken had an important message for me.  (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

Every flight improves when you receive a message from the memo chicken!

Dinner was a high point:  a meal at Boulevard, which won the 2012 James Beard award for Outstanding Restaurant. I enjoyed it quite a bit and recommend the restaurant, but nothing about my meal made me think the restaurant deserved that honor.  Of course, I don't know all the factors that go into that decision, so perhaps I'm missing some important data.

All in all, for a travel day that began far earlier than I'd like, not bad.


Deb Franklin said...

Everyday would be improved with a note from the memo chicken.

Mark said...

I completely agree, Deb.


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