The Flight I Almost Missed

Oh, that was a close one. It’s now Sunday, Sep 10, 2006. For weeks I have been telling people my first outbound flight is Friday, September 14th.

Earlier today I was speaking on the phone with a friend. She asked, “Are you ready for Thursday?”

“What’s happening Thursday?”

“You’re leaving on the 14th, right?”

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As soon as I plugged in the Fujutsu laptop’s AC power and re-booted, I knew I was in deep trouble. The display was 20% scrambled.

Maybe it’s a software glitch or static buildup? I shut down and re-boot again.

Now almost 50% of the screen, the entire left side, was a mess.

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Make Your Bed and Lie in It

777One of my reasons for choosing this route to Sydney instead of the more obvious one across the USA and over the Pacific Ocean using a United or Qantas Boeing 747 is that Malaysia Airline uses a Boeing 777.

The center rear rows  on the Malaysia Boeing 777 are five seats across. (Seat Guru) In most of those rows (but not all) the armrests can be raised to create a bed-like space roughly 8 feet long. It’s a bit narrow for a guy my size but still sleepable. I’ve yet to see a Malaysia Air 777 on these 7 to 10 hour flights anywhere near pax capacity. However, whenever I inquire at checkin about the flight load, I invariably have been told that the flight will be “full or almost full.” I think that statement reflects a capacity definition that requires them to fly with empty seats because the aircraft’s fuel capacity will not allow it to fly that distance whilst carrying a pax in every seat.

But the 747, with much greater fuel storage, can carry full pax load. So, assuming the ability of the airline to sell – and assuming the demand – empty rows on a 747 in this kind of service are less likely than they are in a 777.

It should be interesting to how this works out on the flights during this itinerary.

UPDATE POST TRAVEL:  I have yet to see  a 777 fly these long segments with a full pax load.

Stockholm Syndrome

The Stockholm Syndrome is famous among pyschologists and sociologists. It refers to the intruiging concept, based on a prolonged bank robbery during which the hostages protected their captors when the police attempted a raid. Psychologists say that hostages often form sympathetic bonds with their captors as a survival mechanism. Survivors of an extended ordeal sometimes need to be deprogrammed back to the reality that they have been abused.

International air passengers at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport may well need some shrink-service.

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“So, Mrs. Kennedy, aside from all that, how do you like Dallas?”

I just got an email from the online agency where I had booked the Heathrow Lodge, the budget hotel I stayed in during last week’s brief London layover. They want my review of the experience.

Too late.  This detailed indictment had already been drafted and was being made ready for publication when that request arrived.

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