Hello, hello, hello all!
Right, well it's been a few weeks since I posted my first trip report, which was the first half of my DUO (haha get it?!). The problem was that I had used a different camera for my return journey than my outward one, because my first one had died over the Atlantic, and I had now charger. So when I got home, I couldn't find the USB cable for the second camera. But now that I have, I can finally deliver my long awaited trip report!
Please forgive any spelling and grammar mistakes, I tried my best, but there are a few there I'm sure.
Name: St. Columba/ Colum
Sched Dep: 4:30
Act: Around 5:00
So my last day in L.A. began by getting up, eating, and heading to the nearest Target, just to get some last minute things. After that, it was back to our hotel to repack everything, and get ready for our long day. After packing all of our bags we took off in our rented Dodge Grand Caravan (or looser cruiser as it later became known), which has to be one of the most uncomfortable cards I have ever travelled in.
We drove over an hour (I think) to the Hertz car park, where we dropped off our car and made our way to the bus. The best thing about this pace is the view overhead. The finals for one of the runways is directly above your head, and Imean like 50 feet. We were helped onto the bus by our very friendly bus driver. Onboard it was pretty full. we had pax for British Air (that's what all the Americans over there cal British Airways), Air France, Continental, Delta,Aer Lingus (whoop!) and United. While my parents and the rest of my family sat down and chatted with the guys across from them, I stood and wrestled with our heavy bags, and tried not to fall over when the bus turned corners. The guy across from my family said he recognised our accents, and we told him we were Irish. He told us about how he had gone to Ireland the year before, and visited some place south of Galway, and we said Clare to which he replied YES!
We told him about how we live there, and he told us about how much he liked this little town he visited called Ennis. We told him that we call Ennis home. He was shocked. He also went on about how beautiful the cliffs were, and the Burrow! Yes, he said Burrow!
So after dropping off a few pax for CO
, and AF
, it was time for our stop. It was quite hard getting all of our bags off the bus, onto the trolleys, on the curb, and navigating around the cars. We did it some how. The airport was quite busy on the inside. I found the Aer Lingus Check in desks, which were next to the SQ
desk, and across from LH
one. There were several line for EI
. There was Web check in, which is actually just a bag drop off desk, then there was Aer Kids, for children travelling alone, then Economy, Gold Circle, and Premier. We joined the Gold Cirlce line, which actually consisted of one guy at the desk, and then us. Funnily enough, the economy line moved much faster than our, as some guys was taking his time at the desk. In the mean time two guys next to us (who both appeared to be drunk) were upgrading to Premier for about $3000. When the guy ahead of us checked in, we had to wait, because the check in guy went on break, and some other woman had to take over for him. Check in took ages. Then we had to take our bags over to the screening line, which was huge, and after about 15 mins had only moved by about 3 people. But we found a shorter one over by the Terminal entrance.
So then off to clear security, which was busy, and sm,elled horrible. It was of course because of the fact that you have to take off you shoes and belts. One woman there was a right bitch, and someone gave her back talk over it, to which the woman responded by pulling her aside, yelling and threatening her. Her colleague then took her aside, and told her to calm down.
After security, you enter the departures all for American Eagle flights. So were're walking along, and I notice our Green A220 has arrived. I thought to myself "She looks quite shiny. In fact she looks very shiny. Holy shit it's EI
-DUO, the latest A330-202 to grace the Aer Lingus fleet, kitted out with a new AVOD system, new Y seats, and lie flats in J!!!". I couldn't believe, my mother told me to get a grip on myself. It was this point that I pulled the camera:
Just after docking at the gate
Preparing to unload bags and cargo, with an LH
747 pushing back for its flight to FRA
So we move along, and I continue taking pics as we look around, and try and find somewhere decent to eat.
Notice the UNICEF sticker by the door.
Look at how shiny her skin is
Asian 777 arrives
United Express CRJ-700
A340-600, China Airlines 747-400, and Korean Airlines 747-400
Asiana pulls up next to us, also supporting a UNICEF sticker on their aircraft
Damn is that thing big!
US Airways Express CRJ-900
A346 preparing for its flight to Munich
757 taking off into the West over the Pacific
This thing is huge
So we used the bathrooms, and then got some food at this crappy sand which bar. Nothing tasted all that good, and there were some pretty rude people sitting next to us, who were really rude when we asked if we could have their table meant for four, when there was two of them and six of us. The food didn't go down to well. Then went to visit the bathroom again, and after an evacuation, I knew I would quite comfortable on my long flight !!!
So we continued looking around, and sitting around as our flight had been delayed. So I took more pics
I quite like this one for some reason
I tried everything I could to get the pilots attention...
...waving my arm,s around like a dumbass, but got no response
Engine start up.
Starts moving along
#This was the best picture I could get of this guy, as he was on the end of the Terminal
767 being towed
Delta Connect E-jet in the new colours
Mad dog takes off into the overcast sky consisting of clouds and smog.
Our gate with all the pax waiting, and the tail in the background
So after a little but more waiting around Premier, Elderly , and pax with young children (us) were called for boarding. We joined the que of people, gave them our boarding cards, and passports, and headed down to the plane.
-DUO, with my dad taking up most of the picture.
Snapped this as quickly as I could. The first thing I noticed was how much smaller the mid galley was in comparison the ones on the older aircraft. So we headed down the aisle to row 26.
The new Economy cabin. Pictured is the rather bitchy flight attendant who was very unsociable throughout the flight, very different to what we had experienced on the outward flight.
View towards the front from my seat
The new cabin is quite nice and modern looking. Some people don't like the modern and plastic look of the new EI
cabin, but I do, a lot. It's fresh, spacious, and airy feeling. I don't really like the new green seat covers on the old aircraft, but I like them very much on this one.
Why, thank you.
last picture on the ground. Iwas then asked to turn off my camera for take off, and I decided not to argue with the FA
The safety video is the same as on the older aircraft, but because it's on a larger PTV screen and probably on DVD, the quality turned out to be quite poor. We had a long taxi, and on the way I saw some UA
birds in the new colours, but not much else. We had a long take off roll to the west, and then soared straight into the smog and clouds which prevented us from seeing the ocean.
So we climbed and climbed and eventually reached our altitude.I'm guessing it was about 350 or so.
A drinks service commenced once at cruising level. Ihad a coke, but the FA
forgot to give me my pretzels so I had to remind her even after she had started serving the next customer. She gave them to me, but little did she know that I already had some from my mother, and just wanted another pack because they are so delicious!
The IFE was turned on and I started browsing.
The main menu
The movie menu, sorry about the flash.
So I started watching Two & A Half Men, but I had already seen the episode, and the picture quality wasn;t that good.
SO, in the end I just flicked through everything there.
I watched Scrubs, Friends, Father Ted, ER
, and some other things which I can't remember.
Dinner was soon served. There was a beef and Chicken option. Since I had chosen beef on the out bound flight, I chose chicken this time.
All in all it wasn't very good. The chicken was burnt, and I couldn't make out what vegetables I had been offered.
The one thing that was nice was the cheese cake. But the best cheese cake Ihave ever had was at the Cheese cake factory in Phoenix. 36 different types of cheese cake!!!
They were gorgeous!
So for a while I just sat there and tested the system. Listened to music, start and stop t.v. programmes, and films, play games, and read the Aer Lingus history. I knew most of it, but learned some stuff. For instance, the first Aer Lingus aircraft was the Ilar. Prior to it's first revenue flight it was blessed by the Chaplin of the Aeror drome at Baldonnel. To this day all new EI
aircraft are blessed upon delivery to the airline at DUB
by the Dublin airport Chaplin. It's nice to see that they keep this tradition.
It wasn't long after that I took my first visit to the lav on DUO.
The new lavs are great! They're huge, very spacious and modern looking. The seat doesn't just smack the rim when you plus it down, but instead it gently lowers itself down. Very nice
Go on Munster!!!!
After that I went back to my seat, flicked through the PTV and inflight magazine called Cara, which is the Irish for friend. I went back to the loo after a while, and back to my seat again. The woman in front of my brother had reclined her seat fully, turned on her overhead light, and was typing away at some novel she appeared top be writing, all while the rest of the cabin had been darkened, and pax were trying to sleep. I tried to read some of here book but couldn't make out much. At one stage here son dropped his PSP
and asked me to pick it up for him as it was under his seat and he couldn't reach it.
Again I went back to the loo, to find that it had sprung a bit of a leak. So I went up the the galley and told the FA
there that the lav closest 3L had a large puddle in it. So she went and inspected it, and a few others were called down to look, but I don't think anything happened after that.
I tried to sleep, but could;t get comfortable in my seat. Again, and again I tried to turn on my side but couldn't.
I opened my window at one stage, but was told to close it by the FA
. I re-opened it after she left, but she looked back down again and looked at me with that " I thought I just told you to close that thing" kind of look, so I closed it.
So I sat back and thought of all the memories I would be coming home with...
My cousins room mates Hummer. Those thing sare so bitching!! They are huge. It was completely kitted it out as well with satellite radio and PTVs.
Fourth of July on the Queen Mary (see our red, white and blue ensemble).
Big Thunder Mountain at Disney Land
The Grand Canyon
It's just a big hole in the ground.
The back of the Hoover Dam
This woman wanted to take a picture with my brothers because they were wearing Irish t-shirts, and because we were Irish. Strange...
Disney again, this time Splash Mountain. I thoroughly enjoyed myself on this ride...
Although there are consequences of sitting in the front. This was the only dry part on my body.
Space Mountain, good times...
And the night before we left, Dodger Stadium with the friends we met when we lived in Toulouse
Back to reality.
Breakfast was served about an hour out of Ireland. It was not very impressive. A bunch or cold sliced fruit, none of which tasted very nice, with some cold hard pastry, orange juice and tea.
Beginning our descent
On finals into DUB
with an Easterly arrival landing on Runway 10.
Touchdown, spoilers up, engines reverse, hard on the brakes
and pier D in the distance
Shamrock and tower with flaps retracting
The seasonal Air Canada service to YYZ
using the 762
Heading for departure off of runway 10
Couple of FR
Pier A with the same traffic as from when we left
Probably preparing for the 145 to LAX
And we're docked
Getting up and leaving
We left the aircraft through door 1L. I don't know why, but I have a hunch that it may be so pax could take a look at the New Premier seats, and maybe they'll pay to fly up the front next time. Just a though.
I held up about 70 or so people just to get this shot.
So we headed to immigration, and the line was slightly longer than last time (for E.U. residents) but we breezed through.
Then out into the baggage claim area, very busy again, and out into arrivals, very busy. The Etihad advertisement had been replaced with one for a mortgage company (I think) and there was also one at SNN
as well. Out of the busy arrivals, up the escalator to the very busy departures, and then we joined the long que for security, which was, surprise, surprise, very busy. Once through security it was back out onto the busy shopping area known as the street. A quick visit to the loo, and we headed to pier B for boarding of our second flight, this time to Shannon. We got up there, had our passports inspected, and just waited for a few minutes before we boarded. I think everyone was called to board at this time at once, I can't quite remember.
Name: St. Patrick/ Padraig
Sched Dep: 10:30
Act Dep: Probably on time
Good all EI
, we have a bit of a history us two.
This flight was going to Shannon, and then Boston. U.S. immigration would be done at SNN
, so we were able to board straight away. Last I had heard, DUB
had the old seat covers, the majority of which have been replaced by the new ones.
While most seats had those covers, a lot of them had the old ones, although they just left the green covered ones.
My brother demanded the window seat seeing as I had had it for the other three flights. So i was the nice caring person that I am, and gave the little bollocks the seat. What does he do? He falls asleep before take off and wakes up just before landing. Jackass.
But that's okay. I got to talk to this cute American girl sitting across the aisle from me. She had been doing a two month stay in Dublin, and had been studying in DCU, and working in the city. That took up most of the time on the flight.
The crew were nicer on this flight than the last one. There was one really good looking young FA
, and she never stopped smiling. Her friend was this pompous little guy, who looked abut as old as me, and had his head so far stuck up his own ass, just because he was a steward. That's fine if you're nice, but this guy didn't know anything about manners. He never stopped talking to his friend as we boarded the aircraft (he was doing the meet and greet at the door) his counterpart on the other hand did, and said hello. He went around the cabin, telling pax to move things and stuff, and was not mannerly at all about it.
There was no service on this flight as it's so short. We hovered over the runway at SNN
for quite a bit before touching down. Tha captain hit the brakes hard, and everyone went flying forward.
We parked at gate 34, which is the same stand that I had taxied an EI
A333 to in March, also operating the133. but that's another story.
As we were leaving the aircraft the cute girl, and the annoying guy were supposed to be doing the good byes, bu were too busy talking to one another, so I said good bye to her, and she quickly turned around and said it back.
It took ages for the bags to come, which is strange seeing as so few of us were getting off here.
Shannon airport is something else. It's like stepping off of a time machine, and arriving in the 60's. The carpet is red and orange, the seats are brown and orange, and the trolleys look like the saw the first transatlantic services into and out of Ireland. There are some advertisements in the baggage claim hall for Bunratty Castle and folk park. I looked at one of the photos showing some characters dressed up in medieval clothes, and noticed one of the fiddle players was my fourth class teacher!!!! I knew he had worked there as a fiddle player, but that was a LONG
We stepped out into arrivals, which was busy with FR
pax leaving and being collected.
We stepped outside into the sun, and knew, we were home.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it.
All comments are gladly welcome. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask me.
St. Flannan/ Fhlanain- She took off to find the footlights, And I took off for the sky