so, I’m cruising now at 38000 feet, 530mph, flying directly over I-5 in California. In-flight wireless internet works, in-flight entertainment has some albums of my favorite artists I didn’t hear before (Jazzanova!) and movies I didn’t see. Guy in front of me is playing Doom (and he knows the secrets). Service is awesome, from the check in to flight attendants. Airplane interior has violet glow, and when I boarded, Kruder & Dorfmeister was creating the lounge atmosphere. Ticket cost – 60$. Guess, which airline it is…
Apparently I didn’t take too many pictures in 2008, but today I did upload quite a few to my flickr photostream. Though last year I traveled more than ever (though at least 6 trips were to SF area… ;-), I even left my handycam at home few times.
Still, there was vacation in Greece, Wikimania, which was mostly looping between library of Alexandria and hotel, and layover in Kiev (that was best (shortest/cheapest, not most comfortable) route to Cairo).
Another day of travel
As every travel morning it starts with getting up (04:30AM), packing, brushing, washing, yawning, bathing, all at the same time. I get to airport, and I realize, I’m going to Dublin, one of destinations for lithuanian economic migrants – that means big queue of good life seekers. Though usually check-in queues are just few-minutes long, this time it takes me half an hour to get to the desk, where the fun of the trip starts.
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Wikitravel won a Webby
Congrats to Evan – his Wikitravel won a Webby (and has lots of my personal sympathies). Yepeee. For some people ‘wiki’ means wikitravel more than wikipedia. Wikipedia was winner of ‘best community’ and nominee of ‘best practice’ back in 2004. Yay MediaWiki! :-)
On a morning laugh..
My trip started with a very good laugh. When cab in Vilnius arrived, it had an old and once very popular lithuanian song about California (wine, girls, etc ;-) on the radio. I started laughing and couldn’t stop for a while. Then I explained to confused taxi driver that my destination for the day is San Francisco, 10 time zones and 9200kms away, and the song is absolutely not expected, but really welcoming.
Add the bearded (and hence, experienced) database expert who has been deploying MySQL all around Afghanistan to the same row on my AMS-SFO hop, border control guy who asked if my beer is cold, so he could drink it, and luggage, which managed to arrive.
And the good part, the hotel in the city center for one third of a price has working free wireless. Can’t complain about the day. Twenty hours after waking up it is still midday here. Will see what the evening will bring.
Tribute to bedjump.com
First Delta experience
Lost my luggage (for the first time). On a domestic flight. Saw it last time in JFK. Yay Delta. I got an ’emergency’ t-shirt from them. Pity it doesn’t say “I lost my luggage and all I got is this lousy t-shirt” (too small, BTW). Need some sleep now.
Update: Actually, today all flights from NY (and other north-east American locations) are canceled due to snow storms. We still have people grounded at Newark and Boston.
Update 2: D.E.L.T.A. – Don’t Expect Luggage To Arrive (wisdom of a barmaid, beer is good here :). I’m wondering if my flight back will happen…
Update 3: D.E.L.T.A. – Doesn’t Even Leave The Airport – wisdom of a hotel clerk, though hotel already participated in this story. Apparently they did reject a luggage, as didn’t find me in their database (I share a room…) – now I have hotel manager assisting in me not getting my luggage further. I’m leaving tomorrow.
Update 4: Nothing fancy, did claim my baggage at the airport, then immediately handed it back to Delta for trip home. It arrived now properly.
Travelling is always fun
At current trip I already had a few incidents – like the online ticket ordering fun mentioned before. There were more.
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Not reservation, order code!
Italians sometimes may be damn frustrating. This time I ordered an international train ticket online, then went to train station (Milano Centrale) to get it (may sound stupid, but they seem to require all those reservations and e-tickets still not available).
Of course, the guy at “international tickets” counter didn’t actually speak English (I sure know Italian is most important language, at least in operas). Then… it appears I didn’t read the email properly.
The email their automated system sent me did have two sections. One of them was Order details, which contained ‘Booking code (DOSSIER)’. Another was ‘Ticket details’, which contained a reservation number. Of course, I had wrong code. I know it was frustrating for him too, as the intranet application responded to any clicks in about a minute, so he had a really important reason not to try to help me. I already mentioned he did not speak English.
So, after one hour and two metro trips I presented booking/order/dossier code instead of reservation number, and got my tickets. Oh, and by the way, international ticket office starts working at 7:30, train leaves at 7:10. I am all happy I had this story this afternoon, not the morning of departure.
Update: Well, now I feel stupid and outdated. I could have opened that email in my mobile phone. :-)
The Canadian couple who were sitting in same row as me during my flight to Wikimania’2005.. are going to fly in same plane I’m flying to Wikimania’2006. Talk about coincidences….