We find our hero (ok, heroine) succumbing to the sweet oblivion of sleep..... here's a flashback to find out what had lead up to this collapse.....
Getting on the plane was an adventure.... my ticket said I was in Seat 1J. I had to reread that to make sure I got it right. Yep. 1st row, seat J. Window. No one sat next to me. Sweet. Here's the photo of my little nest:
So, once I got seated and settled, the attendants came around with your choice of orange juice, champaign or .... something else .... samosas? Is that a drink? Of course, I went with the oj:
And, the first thing I did? Took off my shoes. They were so far away in the corner of the bulk head, I literally couldn't reach them from my seat. And, I couldn't touch the bulkhead with my feet all the way extended. Umm... nice? No. FABULOUS!
Then, once you got settled and had your drink, you had to choose your menu for breakfast. Now, I thought we had to choose which starter, main and dessert (yes, dessert with BREAKFAST!) Nope. Only which main. You got all of the rest of it.
Then, once we got airborn, they started bringing round the food. No cart for us, though. Individually brought out, placed on a linen table cloth..... yeah. That was nice. And more silverware than you could shake a stick at! Seriously! Spoon, 2 forks and 3 knives! And they brought MORE for the dessert!
(Dessert at breakfast: GENIUS!)
I slept through the middle of the flight, which was brilliant. The seats weren't the really amazing new ones that really do go totally flat, but.... they went flat enough! I slept for 4 hours, or so, which was just amazing. I'm normally lucky to get 1 hour sleep on a plane. I didn't even break out the movies! I read my book, did some work (as in Work, not PhD) and had another nap (45 minutes, or so).... then they were bringing round the pre-landing 'snack'
That chicken sandwich was brilliant. So yummy.
And, by the time that was all eaten and cleared away, it was time to get ready to land. For the first time EVER, I wasn't just DYING to get off the plane. Sure, I was looking forward to landing, but more because I was anxious to get the rest of the way to Utah, than because I was desperate to get off the plane. *sigh* What a wonderful way to fly.
So, got through customs (no problems there), got my bags, re-checked them, and got back through security. I arrived to Terminal E, and my next flight was scheduled to leave from A, which is the opposite end of the airport, so took the little train to get there. Arrived...... and saw a HUGE list of standby passengers.... 17. And I was? #17. Called Lois to let her know I'd arrived in Atlanta. She filled me in on V (my friend, Veronica, who arranged for my standby ticket. She goes by V) not getting to come They managed to get 15 of the passengers on the flight. That left me, and this other guy, Toa (he's Samoan) trying to get to Salt Lake. So we headed off to the next flight option.... back at Terminal E! Got in touch with Lois again (she called my UK mobile and left a message. I called her back from a pay phone.... much cheaper!) and found out the scoop on the next flight... I thought it was HILARIOUS that she knew I'd not got on the flight before I did! V - you're a fabulous travel agent! Tried to get ahold of V, but couldn't. Called Mary Lou, too.... also ignored my call to let her know I was in the area and say hi. Not that I expected her to drop everything and drive 3 hours to the airport, just wanted to say hi, since I was near by. Chatted with Toa for the 2 hours between the first and second Salt Lake flights.... and the whole time he's getting updates from his cousin, who works in the Atlanta airport, on the status of the flight. We were convinced there was NO WAY we'd get on, either of us. V thought the same. It was completely booked, and everyone had checked in.... and there were 4 or 5 standby people ahead of us. So we figured we would have to catch the NEXT flight, at 9.30, getting in at 11.50 Fortunately, miraculously, even (for us!), a WHOLE BUNCH of people didn't make the flight. So, we made it on! And not only that, but there was even a spare seat between me and the guy in my row. I was in coach, not 1st, but I didn't care a bit. As far as I was concerned, this was the best view ever:
Sometime during the flight they brought round a 'snack'. Just for comparison's sake, I took a photo:
Uh huh. Whatever. Still didn't even care. It was a 4 hour flight (or so... can't remember if it was 4.5 or 4.... but it was long) to Salt Lake, and I was pretty sore by this point. I was REALLY feeling grateful for the 1st Class flight from London, because I'd have been in REALLY sad shape by that point without it. So... again, V, THANK YOU.
Arrived to Salt Lake around 9.00 pm. My luggage had caught the earlier flight, so it was already here, waiting for me. Went to Lois/Steve's house and had a quick change of clothes (and shoes) and went off dancing. Came home around 12.30, and slept. Was actually tired enough that I didn't sleep brilliantly, so was up around 7, though climbed in bed with Lois and watched cartoons (Chip & Dale) for a while, and had a short nap. Got up officially around 8.
I'm still jetlagging a bit, even having had a 2 hour nap earlier, but... it's just good to be home.