Lazy Circles in the Sky

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I know, it's not often that I quote from 'Oklahoma', but if you were on a plane with this flight path, wouldn't you?


This is what happened to my flight on Saturday, when I was trying to get to Amsterdam to catch a connection flight to Munich for my business trip this week.

For those of you who might not know, I went to Germany on business two years ago and had a small mishap with my flight (they wouldn't let me check in as I was a bit late). So imagine how happy I was on Saturday when I arrive at the airport plenty early and discover that my flight will be leaving on time. We board the plane and get settled in and take off as planned. Then, while trying to reach cruising speeds, the engine makes a strange loud revving noise. I've flown once or twice before and this is not a sound I've ever heard. Then it goes away. A couple minutes later, it happens again. At this point I notice on the map that we've now taken a left turn at Oakland. Last I checked, one goes Northeast to get to Amsterdam from San Francisco, not West. I am certain something is not right. Sure enough, a few minutes later the crew announces that our engines are unable to get us to the speed and altitude we need to make it to Europe, so we'll have to circle the Pacific while dumping 50 tons of fuel before landing again in SFO to repair the problem. Wee!

Four hours, almost to the minute, after our first take off we take off again (they fixed the problem and refueled, all while we were sitting on the plane waiting). So my 9 hour flight to Amsterdam turned into 13 hours. On the bright side, I finished my hat for Germany, though I'm unhappy with the length (too short), so I'm going to have to rip it out and reknit it. But the pattern is really cute. I also just about finished Tyler's scarf, most of my book and watched the movie (Wallace and Grommit - The Curse of the Wererabbit, loved it and plan to watch it again with Grant).

Arriving 4 hours late into Amsterdam meant I missed my flight to Munich. So, rather than spending a lovely afternoon and evening in beautiful Regensburg relaxing and sipping coffee while knitting and watching the snow fall, as I'd planned, I instead got to roam around Schipol waiting for the 5:45 pm flight into Munich. Luckily, it's a nice airport, so I grabbed some lunch and read for a bit more. Upon arriving in Munich I had to roam around looking for the transfer desk to catch my shuttle to Regensburg. At long last I found the counter, and between my limited German and their limited English, we got things settled and they let the driver know I was here. There were actually quite a few others going too, so I got to sit in the back middle seat of the van for the hour long trip. Luckily I was able to nap through most of it.

The Roter Hahn hasn't changed a bit since I stayed there last, though this time I'm in a single room (instead of the double I had last time because Grant joined me). Wow, it's tiny! Oh, and there's a freaking step down into the room from the doorway, but it's not really clear when you're dragging all your luggage, I'm lucky I didn't break my neck. After stowing my junk away I called Grant to let him know I was safe and then settled in for a little bit of German TV before calling it a night. I needed to meet my colleagues at 8 am so I definitely wanted to get some sleep.

The next 5 days will be spent in the office, so I'm not sure how many entries I'll post, but keep your eyes on the blog next weekend to see pictures of my wanderings.



Dad said:

Wow....don't you ever go to Germany like normal know, get on a plane, fly, change and arrive at destination? Remind me never to schedule a same flight with you!!! :) Glad all is well...Dad

Christina said:

Wow, sounds like you had an adventure! I hope the rest of your trip goes better. Have fun!

~ Christina

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This page contains a single entry by published on January 16, 2006 1:02 AM.

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