Hello. This is my 2005 trip to Italy. I did write a report but thought it was quickly thrown together and lacked detail. If you really want to read it go ahead and search the database under my username. Although it lacks pic I’ll try t make it as interesting as possible. Here it goes.
So after a hot day in my town of Cherry Hill, NJ at around 15:30 I found myself driving over the Walt Whitman Bridge heading towards PHL for my 18:00 flight to FCO.
08:15 +1 On time
A330-300 N671UW(now N271AY)
So I arrive at the check in counter at aprox. 16:10 and get checked in for my flight to PHL by a relatively unfriendly US Airways agent in the A-West check in area. I then proceed to security where I get cleared and then spot something quite interesting. A US F/A running after a US pilot (Maybe husband/Boyfriend/ 1 night stand) We’ll never know. She was yelling “Don’t you run away from me. Don’t even.” I also spot an LH 744 an occasional visitor to PHL apart from the normal A343 they send. At A23 I see my A333 glistling in the late afternoon sun and watch as the crew boards. They appear to be quite senior and guess who comes trotting at the end of the line….You got it the one yelling and screaming 1 hour earlier. She will be working this flight to FCO. Soon enough boarding is called and I board our shiny A330 and am welcomed by our F/A Nabilia who is quite friendly and directs me down the right Aisle to 17G my seat for our 7HR 55MIN journey across the Atlantic. When I reach the end of the B Zone?(etops1 do you know?)I am welcomed by an older F/A and we begin to talk about US, 762’s, and Italy it’s self . This will be my fourth visit to Italy. We soon push tail west and join the lone line for 27L. After an LH 744 we rocket down 27L and lift off into the hazy August sky and experience the normal turbulance associated with hot weather. We soon level off at FL370 which according to Capt. Harris will only be temporary and later we will climb to FL390. The F/A’s soon come about selling headsets which I did not partake in as I already had my own. Soon after the Sony Passport AVOD is turned on and I begin with watching The Rugrats cartoon (Still have that inner-child in me). Soon enough dinner and drinks come around at the same time. For dinner I have tortellini pasta. Being my first time traveling US transatlantic since January 2004 I wasnt aware they switched catering and I was supised to see my meal come along side a meal box which contained bread, carrots, and pudding. To drink I had Coke. After dinner I head to the rear where I notice one of the other Female F/A’s filming the galley and so we get to talking about aviation and she tells me she is working on her PPL and we talk about that a bit as I am working on my PPL as well. Soon after I return to my seat to watch the movie “Beuty Shop” which is a comedy. Quite good. After I cop a few ZZZZ. Midflight somewhere over the Atlantic nearing the Irish coast the one f/a who was going balistic in the PHL terminal offerd me water or OJ in which I have water. The sun then soon rises and around Brest. France we are served breakfast which was a doughnut and the F/A serving my aisle who had been nice at the begging was now slamming doughnuts on peoples trays (Quite a moody Crew) I have OJ to go along with my doughnut. We then initiate our decent toward FCO and approach over the Lazio hills then lining up for 16R? Along the Tyrranian sea. We then touch down quite hard in a rainy Rome and taxi to C24. I then clear passport control and claim my bag where I then proceed to the rail station to catch to Leonardo Express to Termini station to connect to my FS train to Cortona in Toscana.
**Stay in Italy**
Over my 2 ½ week trip I visit Cortona (My friends town), Bricherasio (In the northern Pieamonte region), Bologna, Firenze, and of course Roma. I found the Pieamonte region to be more French than Italian and even the food seemed quite Southern French. Even this being my fourth time in this beautiful country I still discovered new places and still marvel the beuty that the country has to offer.
August 18th 2005
So I get up around 4:30 am for the 3HR drive to FCO on the Autostrada. At around 9:30 am we finally make it and proceed to the LH check in counter for our flight to FRA and PHL.
So we get checked in and head through security to B9 to find our AB6 already bording so we proceed to board when arriving at the door only to find our vicious LH F/A at the 2L door scream “Actung!!!!!!!!” and yell some more in German then she storms off and the Purser shows up and says in a soft Bavarian accent “Don’t listen to her. She’s a Frankfurter” Apparently the Purser is MUC based and she says Frankfurters are to uptight and always have something to say. (Interesting crew eh?) so we board and I find my seat 15C which is a bulkhead at the front of Y class. and I sit next to a nice man from Mexico and he says they are on their way to CDG then on to MEX on AM. So we finally push and taxy to RWY 25 then following an AZ A320 we rocket down the runwaay then make about a 20 degree right turn over the Tyrranian sea. Soon enough we reach FL300 and are served a turkey sandwich which was good but cold and dry. To drink I have Gerolesteiner water. Soon enough the robots disappear to the rear and I head back to get my water refilled and with a little resistance finally get it. Soon enough we begin a decent into a hot and sunny FRA approaching over Wiesbaden and slam down onto the ruway and then the PIC slams on the brakes then turns off onto a taxyway at approx 80KIAS with the reverser still on. As a pilot I cant complain as I make landings from hell from time to time but with smaller equiptment (Cessna 150/172).
**Transfer in FRA**
So from the arrival gate somewhere in concource A we proceed thru the colorful corridor to Passport followed by the transfer to B9 where I spot a 744 at the gate but soon discover it is heading for DEN and our A343 was on the handstand and we would get there via Bus. I was hoping for an A340 as I have already been on the 744 with BA 2 years earlier and had yet to ride on a 340.
Lunch/Movie/Pre arrival snack
So we climb onto the crowded bus and head to our A340. One thing I notice is that the jet ways are mainly reserved for the 744’s and A346’s while the A343’s and A333’s are out on the handstand. So we board through the 2L door and greeted by a less then friendly F/A and proceed to the very back of the Airbus and frown upon that I am stuck in the middle in 42D for the next 8HR’s and 30Min and I am stuck next to a Latvian who reeked of whisky and had blood shot eyes. The F/A handing out the kid packs looks at me and frowns! Am I offensive? Soon she passes by and says “Hablar Espanol?” to which I reply “Si, Yo hablo Esplanol. Por Que?” To which she says “Por Que yo soy de Chile!” It just so happens that I am 32% Chilean the rest being Italian so. Then I go on to ask her in Spanish how she noticed to which she reply’s in Spanish “Every Chilean knows another!” so I said in English after they finish the meal service I would come back and chat. So soon we taxy to the runway and following an LH 733 we zoom (Ahem, Crawl) into the hot sky of FRA and 45 mins later we level off at FL370 and then the F/A’s pass with drinks and peanuts to which I have a Coke and much on my peanuts and my Latvian seatmate has a…..You got it a whisky. Soon lunch to which I have Salmon and dill sause with water. Soon the Magazin is showed on the main screen followed by the movie “Monster in Law” Soon enough which was quite a good picture. Funny. Then I head to the galley and chat with F/A from Chile who I later learn is from Santiago while my family is from Vina Del Mar. She was formerly Cabin crew with LA in the 80’s before flying with LH and now lives in FRA part time and Santiago the rest. Her normal trip is FRA-EZE-SCL but took this trip for a friend who had to go to HAM on family emergency and in 3 days would go back to BOS. Soon after I return to my seat another movie commences but I don’t pay any attention to it. The F/A’s 2 hours before landing hands out a personal pizza and I have coke and water with it. We soon comence or decent and land on 9R and taxy to A14 and pull in next to a US 762 from BCN.