Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Interview Trip Part II: BA/WN LHR-LAX-SJC-LAX-LHR  
User currently offlineSmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1628 posts, RR: 28
Posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 5806 times:

(PART 2 OF TRIP REPORT)

Wed. April 4: WN 709 LAX-SJC Boeing 737-700, N205WN

The day after my interview, the USC student picked me up at the Westin Pasadena at 9:00am and took me back to LAX for my 12:00pm Southwest flight to SJC, where I would catch the Caltrain into San Francisco. At LAX terminal 1, there was a LONG line snaking out into the street. But since I had already checked in online the night before (and gotten in Group A) with Southwest, I went inside to the line for e-ticket/online checkin desks with my boarding pass to drop my big Samsonite. I went straight to security and from there into the sterile area itself. My breakfast was an omelette pizza from a California pizza restaurant in the terminal. I spent the next two or so hours standing by a window near gate 1, and later, near my gate (9), with my camera, shooting away:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



Soon I saw my Southwest 737-700 in the new colours, the one I would be taking to SJC, N205WN, as it came to my gate (9):


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



As we taxied out to runway 24L and took off, I took a few more photos from my window seat on the 737:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



As I was in Group A, I was able to find a window seat above the left wing, and I sat next to a very nice bearded man in a suit and tie (he was a lawyer working on a medical case at USC). He asked me what I was doing, and I told him what I came all the way out to California from London for. He was quite impressed and wished me good luck with my interviews. The atmosphere amongst the FAs and cabin crew on the Southwest flight was a jovial one. Our flight was a short, but beautifully scenic, one; we went north along the beautiful California coast and made it to SJC in an hour. SJC is such a beautiful small airport; its terminal A seems to be built out of solid polished granite! Before I got off the Southwest 737, I asked an FA for a WN safety card; she gave one to me. Whilst waiting for my bag, a friendly lady (also from my flight) also asked me where I was from and I told her was I was in California (all the way from London) for; she wished me the best of luck. As soon as I collected my bag, I went outside terminal A to the bus stop, where I caught the free VTA 10 bus to the Santa Clara Caltrain station. I rode the upper deck of the double-decker Caltrain into San Francisco, where I caught the N-Judah line of the Muni to my motel (Oceanview Motel) on Judah Street, just west of the UCSF Medical Center campus.

That night (April 4) I caught a Giants game at AT&T Park, where they got trounced by the SD Padres 5-3 in the 2nd game of the opening week series. For dinner at the ballpark I had a nacho grande and lemonade. As a 12-year-old boy sitting behind me so eloquently complained, "They Friggin' SUCK!" (The Giants were getting trounced.) I just had to laugh at his verbal antics--they were just as entertaining as the game, if not more! Fans can be SO fun to watch! For souvenirs, I got myself a Giants logo baseball and an official Rawlings "Big Stick" baseball bat engraved with my name (FRANCIS J. SMITH); I've always wanted my own personal baseball bat! (I love baseball, needless to say!) Yes, I was able to get this back to England with me. More details on that later!

On Thurs. April 5, I spent all day at the UCSF Medical Center campus, being interviewed by THREE interviewers--one right after another. All of them were very impressed with my application, CV, my work, and my life story (which has motivated me to pursue the craniofacial-deformities field). The last one, an older bearded guy from London (and who is a King's College London alumnus), spent the most time with me as a father would with a loved son. He seemed to be very sure that I would get into the PhD program at UCSF. All three of my interviewers would go to bat for my admission. It was a very good interview day and the atmosphere at UCSF was a warm, welcoming one. It so happens, a week after I got back to London, the London guy who interviewed me at UCSF came to give a speech at the RAF Club and personally invited me to this formal occasion. All of them at UCSF seem to be sure I will likely get an offer from UCSF, possibly to start this July. But I am going to wait for an official decision from UCSF (and others) to be sure, before I decide whose program to enter. I'm heavily leaning toward UCSF.

After a great day in San Francisco (which I fell in love with at first sight), it was all too soon time to think about heading back to London next day. That evening, I attended the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Fri. April 6: WN 1083, SJC-LAX, Boeing 737

I got up around 7am, gathered my bags (and the baseball bat), and left the Oceanview Motel without any breakfast. I caught the Muni to the Caltrain station in downtown San Francisco near the AT&T ballpark, and caught the Caltrain down to Santa Clara to get the bus to SJC airport. I had checked in online the night before, and once again, I had an A boarding pass. There I checked in my Samsonite bag and my baseball bat. The Southwest check-in agent put my baseball bat in a big white plastic Southwest bag, tied it up, and put a claim tag on it. I hoped my bat would make it to LAX safely. (It did!) Soon (at 2:25pm) I caught WN flight 1083 to LAX, a quick one-hour flight. Upon landing at LAX at 3:45pm and reaching terminal 1 gate 7, I went right down to baggage claim and waited over a half-hour for the bags from flight 1083 to show up. Finally they showed up--both my Samsonite and my baseball bat. I had to rush over to TBIT on the Airline Connections bus, as time for my next flight, BA 283 to LHR, was getting short! (It was scheduled for 5:50pm.)

(TRIP REPORT CONTINUES NEXT REPLY DUE TO SIZE)

SmithAir747


I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
11 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineSmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1628 posts, RR: 28
Reply 1, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 5805 times:

(CONTINUATION OF TRIP REPORT FROM ABOVE)

Fri. and Sat. April 6 & 7: BA 283, LAX-LHR, Boeing 747-436 G-BYGB, seat 53B

After getting lost in the lower level of TBIT trying to find the departures entrance, I finally made it up to the upper level. I ran to the BA check-in desk with my bags, baseball bat, and boarding pass from online checkin (with seat 53B marked on it). They confirmed my documents and sent me to the TSA checked-bag-screening area, where I waited for quite some time whilst they passed a lot of bags through the big machine there. My bag came back out, but I had to wait a while before they found my baseball bat and put it with my bag. They walked with me to the BA check-in desks, with my Samsonite and baseball bat on a trolley, and they gave those to the BA check-in agent who put my bag on the belt. He almost forgot my baseball bat, which was sitting on the desk wrapped in the white plastic bag! He finally put it on the belt, to my relief. I went on toward the gates. First I ended up one floor above where I should have been, but then a friendly airport chaplain guided me to the security area. I made it through security (what with the stripping of my shoes from my feet, etc) to my gate, 103, just in time for boarding. En route to the gate, I photographed an Aeroflot 767-300 and my BA 747-400, G-BYGB, from the windows:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



Whew! I made it onboard the 747 and found my seat, 53B, the very last row. We pushed back on time (around 5:50pm) and taxied out towards one of the southern runways. As we were taxying out to the runway, I shot a few photos:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



We took off with a mighty roar (and G-forces pushing me back in my seat), headed west out over the Pacific, and made a grand sweeping turn back eastward to land, where the sun shone brightly into the cabin, enabling me to get this shot:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



I settled in for a long overnight flight with my World War Three book and the map channel on the IFE screen and a nice meal (with the fish and mushrooms and all). During the flight over the Western states and Canada, I was able to shoot this lovely sunset from my window:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



I also shot a couple of nighttime cabin photos, one of the rear cabin and one artistic close-up of the windows tapering in the rear fuselage next to my seat:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith




MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



I did something I've never been able to do on a plane: I got a few hours' sleep! I awoke to see the sun beginning to shine through some windows with raised blinds; by that time we were over the north Atlantic just west of the Irish landmass. For breakfast there was (I kind of remember) some fruit, a muffin (?), orange juice, etc. (It's usually hard for me to remember what I ate yesterday, much less from a trip a few weeks ago!) Soon, it was nearing time to land. I filled out a UK entry card. Over England, we approached LHR from the west. As we were descending toward LHR runway 09L, I shot this lovely photo of Windsor Castle from my 53B window:


MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Francis J. Smith



We landed in a cloudy London, touching down on LHR runway 09L with a roar of thrust reversers and with fully-deployed spoilers and triple-slotted flaps. Those flaps never cease to amaze me! We taxied over to terminal 1 and parked at gate 52. I was the last to deplane; on my way out, I complimented the FAs on a great flight and remarked on how the 747 is my favourite plane. The BA cabin crew all agreed with me that the 747 is the BEST!

I woudn't mind having a 747 of my own!  Big grin

I breezed through UK immigration (where, as always, upon seeing my UK Entry Clearance student visa in my US passport, they asked me what I was studying and where), baggage reclaim (where both my baseball bat and Samsonite made it safely, to my relief) and HM Customs green channel. I caught the Piccadilly line on the Tube all the way back to Russell Square from LHR.

My only regret is that the trip was too short a trip--I was just enjoying myself with the interviews and the cities themselves (especially San Francisco and UCSF).

Who knows when my next 747 trip will be? I can't wait!

The BIG question is now, where will I end up doing my craniofacial PhD at? UCSF looks most likely. I have to be patient and wait for all the official decisions to come in from all the universities I've applied to.

SmithAir747



I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
User currently offlineAIR380 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 181 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5766 times:

Nice trip report!!!
And you are quite British already:

Quoting SmithAir747 (Thread starter):
in the new colours

How did the interview go?


User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12095 posts, RR: 49
Reply 3, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5766 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

What a GREAT trip report and a pleasure to read. Best of luck to you.


You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlineSmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1628 posts, RR: 28
Reply 4, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5711 times:

Quoting AIR380 (Reply 2):
How did the interview go?

Both the interviews (at USC-Los Angeles and at UCSF) went very well. In fact, my three interviewers at UCSF told me I have a strong chance of getting in (and a strong likelihood of an offer very soon). They all want me to come out to UCSF, possibly as early as July so I can start working on my lab projects since I already have most of the required background that I could skip some of the preliminary taught courses. All of my interviewers (at both USC and UCSF) were very impressed with my credentials, my CV, my work, and my life story (with a craniofacial disorder myself).

I'm taking a wait-and-see attitude; I'm waiting for whatever official decisions (offers) I get before I decide. But I'm leaning toward UCSF.

Please take a look at my Non-Aviation thread about my interviews, for more details:
Two Interviews Coming Up for Me
Two Interviews Coming Up For Me (by SmithAir747 Mar 26 2007 in Non Aviation)

SmithAir747



I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
User currently offlineScarletHarlot From Canada, joined Jul 2003, 4673 posts, RR: 56
Reply 5, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 5650 times:

That's a gorgeous picture of Windsor Castle, Francis...I had no idea you could see it so clearly on the way in to Heathrow. I wonder if Her Majesty is ever wakened by 'planes flying over?  Smile


But that was when I ruled the world
User currently offlineLoungeLover From Germany, joined Aug 2004, 148 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 5313 times:

Really enjoyed the trip report Frank.

Hope you make the right decision with your interviews - best of luck to you!


User currently offlineSmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1628 posts, RR: 28
Reply 7, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 5021 times:

Quoting AIR380 (Reply 2):



Quoting ScarletHarlot (Reply 5):



Quoting LoungeLover (Reply 6):

I just found out that UCSF has accepted me for a place in their craniofacial PhD program. I will await decisions from other schools before I decide whose to accept, but I'm leaning toward UCSF.

SmithAir747



I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
User currently offlineONTFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 380 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 4792 times:

Quoting SmithAir747 (Reply 7):
I just found out that UCSF has accepted me for a place in their craniofacial PhD program. I will await decisions from other schools before I decide whose to accept, but I'm leaning toward UCSF.

Congrats on the acceptance! Whichever program you choose, you can't go wrong. I agree, SF is a beautiful city.



Doin' just fine thanks...
User currently offlineGoldenshield From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 6014 posts, RR: 14
Reply 9, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 4729 times:

Quoting SmithAir747 (Thread starter):
I spent the next two or so hours standing by a window near gate 1, and later, near my gate (9), with my camera, shooting away:

Wait. You were at LAX that long, and didn't catch a single glimse of an E120 or Saab 340?  Wink



Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.
User currently offlineSmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1628 posts, RR: 28
Reply 10, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4593 times:

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 9):
Wait. You were at LAX that long, and didn't catch a single glimse of an E120 or Saab 340?

Sure, I saw a few of these silver SkyWest EMBs pass by, but I didn't shoot any of those. I tend to shoot 747s and special-livery planes, not commuters or other run-of-the-mill stuff.

I also saw some American Eagle Saab 340s the day I landed at LAX from LHR.

SmithAir747



I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
User currently offlineParisien From France, joined Dec 2000, 823 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (7 years 4 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 4231 times:

hey, nice trip report.
and of course congratulations on your acceptance. Enjoy this moment (when all the schools give you acceptance and will try to get you to come to their program)...great to be wanted isnt it ? SF is a beautiful city, but you also have to consider other aspects (financing etc.) and VERY important to have a good advisor...not only for during your studies but also after....Did you chat a lot with the grad students in each school ? They would be a really good source for additional info etc. What exactly is your research area in craniofacial disorder ?
Again, congratulations !


Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Interview Trip Part II: BA/WN LHR-LAX-SJC-LAX-LHR
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
LAX-LHR With VS – Images Included (Part II) posted Sat Apr 17 2004 16:17:46 by Jkw777
AUH-LHR-LAX-LHR-DXB On BA/VS In Y/J/Y/T posted Thu Jan 11 2007 22:20:50 by Airxliban
MTY-DFW-LAX-HNL-LAX-DFW-MTY Part II (pics) posted Sat Nov 25 2006 18:53:17 by Edelag
BA Non-rev: LAX-LHR In F + Pics posted Mon Sep 4 2006 13:54:00 by Wrighbrothers
BA Club World LAX-LHR Upper Deck With Pix posted Tue Apr 4 2006 01:12:42 by AirxLiban
LHR-LAX: Going Home On BA 269 In WT+ W/Pix posted Fri Dec 9 2005 18:55:53 by AirxLiban
BA TLV-LHR-IAD (Part 2, Return Trip) posted Wed Nov 24 2004 18:14:03 by Transtar
LHR-LAX-LHR With BA On 747 W/ Pics posted Tue Apr 13 2004 00:44:03 by British767
LHR-LAX With VS – Images Included (Part I) posted Sun Apr 11 2004 14:39:00 by Jkw777
The World's Favourite Trip: Part 1- BA SFO-LHR-HEL posted Sat Jul 5 2003 21:56:36 by OH-LGA
Italy Trip Part II: SN Brussels Airlines FCO-BRU posted Thu Sep 1 2005 11:15:29 by Sabena 690
Part 2 - LHR-LAX BA WT - 1 Lame Pic! posted Tue Mar 21 2006 00:10:06 by IFEMaster
LAX-LHR With VS – Images Included (Part II) posted Sat Apr 17 2004 16:17:46 by Jkw777
BCN/LHR-LAX-SYD BA & QF First The Return Many Pics posted Fri May 9 2008 19:15:10 by QFFlyer
Saudi-Dubai-LHR-LAX On BA/SV In Club posted Fri Dec 14 2007 08:31:18 by AirxLiban
BA LHR-LAX-LHR In Y Class With Film Reviews posted Mon May 7 2007 01:10:48 by Cedarjet
AA/BA In J LAX-JFK-LHR-AMS-LHR-MIA-LAX (pics) posted Mon Jan 15 2007 05:52:06 by KL808
AUH-LHR-LAX-LHR-DXB On BA/VS In Y/J/Y/T posted Thu Jan 11 2007 22:20:50 by Airxliban
MTY-DFW-LAX-HNL-LAX-DFW-MTY Part II (pics) posted Sat Nov 25 2006 18:53:17 by Edelag

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format