Saturday 28th January, 2012

Long haul flight to San Francisco - Lots of pressure

Travelling again after 6 months. London to San Francisco.

When we left home, just after 6:30 am, I felt pretty good.

This was my first flight for 6 months and I had forgotten some of the joys of passing through an airport.

We had booked valet parking. Purple Parking conditions state " Your chauffeur will only wait up to 15 min after the meeting time." 15 minutes after our booked time, we were still waiting for our chauffeur.

Check-in was pretty easy. Unfortunately, my AA Executive Platinum card expires at end of February, so I was lose the privilege

Fast Track security at Terminal 3 is misnamed. The process is extremely poorly implemented with numerous bottle necks. They need to look at some of the security checks at American airports which provide much more space for passengers to extract things from their hand luggage that need to be separately scanned.

The American Airlines Flagship lounge had introduced a full cooked breakfast. Before we left for the gate, I had some ominous discomfort from my digestive system. On board the flight to Dallas, this got a lot worse as the cabin pressure was reduced. This was there throughout the flight. Relaxing in a business class seat reduced the discomfort to a manageable level, but plans I had to get my PC out had to be abandoned.

The onbound flight to San Francisco was just as bad and by the time we got to the Mark Hopkins Intercomntinetal hotel, I was getting quite severe cramps every few minutes.

I was impressed to find that our taxi from the airport was a hybrid car, less impressed that the style of driving produced an average petrol consumption of about 15mpg.

We got to the hotel around 7pm, went for a short walk and visited the bar for a martini before getting to bed just after 9pm.