We were greeted by a friendly (and familiar) flight attendant --- none other than fellow YYZ a.netter CESSNAPIMP. He's a great guy and a great flight attendant, and I'd fly with him again in a second.
We got to go through de-icing which is something I've always wanted to do, but never have. I was surprised how nervous it made some people, but it was actually very cool to watch some guy fiddling with a joy stick while this mechanical arm wandered up and down the wings.
Anyways, great flight on an Airbus 319. (Thanks for getting me the fin # Greg!)
Photo © Michael Durning
We spent couple of days of debauchery in Miami and met lots of interesting people, but what goes on the road stays on the road, so the rest is !.
When our cruise ship stopped in St. Maarten, my travel friend was nice enough to ditch the rest of our friends and come with me to fulfill my inner-geek-need to go to Maho Beach. I was like a kid in a candy store, and by the end of the day even she had started to enjoy lying underneath landing aircraft.
The Sunset Beach Bar at Maho Beach is great bar that caters to a.net geeks like me and plays both great music as well as the local air traffic control. It posts the arrival times on a surf board and its patio is a great place to sip your beer and watch the heavies fly in (as well as the heavies in speedos strolling in).
A word of advice while at Maho Beach. Do NOT ignore the warning signs about standing on the beach while jets are taking off. You WILL be blown into the water! In the photo below, the two men lost their caps, and one of them fell into the water. You can also see the waves being pushed back from the thrust of the engines.
Now for a little excitement: Take a very close look at this photo.
That's a CO 737 making its way REALLY closely behind the aircraft at the top. It was odd to witness actually, I saw the CO plane coming around and lining up for the runway when the little beast came from around the hotel and scooted in front. The 737 turned as if it was going to abort, but then lined itself back up again and kept going.
I tried to get a good shot of the CO 737 coming in, but just after I snapped first shot (the engines roared and the pilot aborted the landing. The 737 seemed to hover down the runway before making a very steep climb over the hills at the other end of SXM's famous runway. (Sorry I wasn't able to better picture, but I use a tourist-class camera and any good pics I take are the result of luck rather than skill!).
So that was my excitement in Maho. The flight home (AC Airbus 321) was very bumpy and we landed in a rain-snow storm, but otherwise uneventful.
I hope you enjoyed reading my first trip report.
If anyone has any other info about that CO flight, I'd be interested in hearing what happened.