Sorry it took so long to get this up, but here's a little narrative about my trip yesterday for anyone who's interested:
It all started at 9 am, when i was walking from Purdue University Airport's Hangar 1 (the AvTech Classroom building, where I had a 7:30 class), to the Purdue Simulator building for my 9:30 session in an FTD. In between these tw buildings stands, among other things, our airline terminal. I went in to check in for my flight, an 11:45 departure on United Express (Great Lakes Airlines) flight 6792, an Embraer 120 Brasilia. After my sim class, I went back to the terminal and boarded the flight, which began to taxi at 11:50. We went to runway 28 and, after a 7 minute groundhold, began our takeoff roll at 11:58. We climbed out and made a right turn northbound, giving me a great view of the University out of my window. There was a flight attendant, but no beverage service. This is the first flight I have been on that had no service, so that was interesting. After 31 minutes, we touched down on runway 22R at O'Hare at 11:29. We taxied in to the UE area at Terminal two, and deplaned. As I was getting off of the plane, I asked the flight attendant whether our baggage claim would be in Terminal 2, where we arrived, or T-1, where United's operations are. She told me terminal 2, so I went down to the baggage claim there and found no indication of UA claims. I then found out that my bag would indeed be claimable at Terminal 1, so I walked over there to get it.
Once I had claimed my bag, I walked over to Terminal 3, where I checked in for American Airlines flight 861, a 737-800 to San Diego with a scheduled departure of 2:55 pm. I had about 3 hours, so I went to Chili's for lunch in T-3, then went out to the L concourse, where my flight was to leave from, and watched planes for a while. Finally, at about 2:40, I was cleard off of the stand by list for flight 861 and issued a boarding pass. I was assigned a window, seat 22F. We pushed back a little late, at 3:07, and taxied to 27L. After waiting for 8 departures (AA MD-80, 2 AA 738, 2 AA 757, AA 767, AA F100, and TW MD-80), we began our roll at 3:21. We climbed to FL310 and, on our way there, the captain made an interesting announcement. After all of the usual welcome aboard AA stuff, he said, "We're especially proud to welcome you aboard this aircraft today. She was just delivered from Seattle and this is her first flight in revenue service." I thought that was pretty cool. This flight began with a beverage service, which for me meant my first two cans of Coke for the day. After that, dinner was served. I had cheese totellini in meat sauce, with a salad and a roll. The other option was glazed chicken with macaroni and cheese. The tortellini was very good. The dinner cart was immediately followed by the drink cart, so two more cans of Coke. The Thomas Crown Affair was shown, as was CBS Eye on American, but I just listened to CDs and looked out the window. About an hour before landing, we flew just south of Las Vegas and I got a breathtaking view of the city and the strip. About this time, beverages were served again. We touched down on runway 27 in San Diego at 5:23 pm, and got to the gate about 10 minutes behind schedule.
All in all, this was a very nice trip. I am currently planning to return to ORD Monday night on a Super 80, but I may yet opt to connect through LA and take a 767 - we'll have to see how I feel. After that, I'm not sure yet whether I'll take Great Lakes back to Lafayette or take Eagle to Indianapolis... I'll probably just fly to LAF unless that flight is full.
Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate it.