***VIDEOS WILL BE
OCT 17Th, 2008
After I had arrived in to the parking lot of the STL
Airport, I looked up in time to see the fighter jets screaming overhead doing their stunts, moves and whatnot. Since the Missouri Guard is located at Lambert as well they share the runways and airspace too. I walked to the Main terminal where AA
largely operates out of and went upstairs to the main terminal check in area. I walked over to the self-check in machines, swiped my credit card and my itinerary pulled up. I normally upgrade one segments of my flights each trip on AA
but this time I was told (by DFW13L, thanks for the heads up there too bud!) it was going to be very full possibly overbooked and to not expect an upgrade at the machine. ORD
was also just a bit to short for me anyhow in terms of flight time to be in F Class and I didn't mind sitting in the back for once on the MD80's.
As expected the offer to upgrade ORD
did not come up, but STL
did. Sorry to say I would NOT waste 45 bucks to fly F STL
or use a 500 mile pass as an Elite member either. Just not worth it for me. I declined the upgrade and continued to check in, no bags to be checked, confirmed, completed, and out spit my two flimsy boarding passes for both segments, STL
I was not elite yet, If I did my calculations correct, after this trip, to and back should complete my 5,000 points needed to earn Gold Elite Status, as part of the Challenge I was doing with American, many A.net members are quite familiar with this challenge. It is again many thanks to Longhornaniac for bringing this to my attention! So thanks again man! Since I was not elite yet as I started to mention, I would't be able to use the new priority access that AA
had set up around the airports, STL
I went through security, being a pro as it is it literally took me 5 minutes if that to be honest. Security is such a breeze as long as you KNOW what you are DOING!!! I walked down to the end of the Terminal as we were not due to board for another hour. I popped my DVD in and watched my DVD passing the time. When it came to about 10 minutes before boarding I walked over to C-16 and snapped a picture of the MD80 at the gate that would carry me to freedom, I mean Chicago.
Pretty soon they announced Pre boarding, first class and priority access to board. I was in group 2 so my turn to board was coming quite soon. Group 2 was announced, I texted my friends to announce I was boarding and to say au revior! I got on the plane, and went to my seat 25A. This is probably my favorite seat on the MD80, window, no middle and right behind the wing for all the action.
I caught a little action as an AA
757 with winglets came swooping in and there also must have been some emergency somewhere as an ambulance drove by with lights on too.
I patiently waited for everyone else to board as well and in no time we were due to back out from the gate and head for Runway 30L.
We taxied to runway 30L and took off. We took off and turned left a bit oddly, I wasn%u2019t used to this take off. We climbed steadily then kept on climbing however we kept banking left then took a huge turn to the right, my guess is since we took off the west and Chicago being just northeast of St. Louis hahaha. We climbed to cruising altitude. STL
is a pretty basic run of the mill flight. Typically short, and fast. I mean it is hard for airlines to screw up 30 min flights usually, however SWA can manage to serve a complete round of drinks and peanuts STL
which is shorter then STL
. However, AA
managed to serve everyone on board and I had apple juice. I always crave apple juice when I fly and this certainly was no exception!
We did a few turns, but nothing big, it was a pretty straight flight on to ORD
It started to get VERY cloudy as we soon began the approach into O%u2019Hare. I didn't realize what the weather would be like but apparently very cloudy just outside of Chicago, but the airport was mostly cloudy with some sun breaking through the clouds. We did our usual turns and such. This approach was quite steep and lot of engine revving up more then usual. Dropping to fast? Going to slow, who knows. I am not a pilot, I just play one! Hahaha
Flaps started coming out as we were approaching, spoilers or rather speed brakes popped up too. Landing gear clunked out and we broke through the clouds to come into ORD
I am not familiar at all with this runway but I think I had landed on this a long time back on a TWA 727 when I flew it as a charter flight going MWA-ORD
. Ya that was a long time ago haha. We landed on the runway and as usual I was in heaven seeing all the Boeing widebodies. I mean there was an airbus but we all know how much more important Boeing is in Chicago being the HDQ's haha Kidding, sorta, maybe not
We taxied by some planes and headed to the gate at ORD
. We took some time getting off the plane but I was not in a hurry at all. I had plenty of time to connect at ORD
for my PHL
flight. I got off the plane and made my way into the airport.
OCT 17TH, 2008.
I had been texting Transpac787 and he was urging me to go check out the 777 Flight 158 to DME
. With nothing else to do and being a slave to Transpac787 I made my way to gate L-8 where according to the screen the Moscow flight would be departing from. I made the trek out there and holy shit is it a long trek! WOW! Not made for the shoes I was wearing that day! I made it to the gate, L-8 and saw the beauty that we call the Boeing 777-200! N756AM was the registration of the aircraft at the gate. To please Transpac787 I went ahead and snapped two pics for his viewing pleasure as well as everyone else's! So enjoy these two 777 shots preparing for the DME
Afterwards I headed down the end of L gates and snapped more pics of some of the intl action going on, then snapped a pic walking back to my gate for the PHL
I was hungry so I went over to mcdonalds to grab a snack to tide me over until we got into PHL
. I walked over to the gate and sat around waiting for the flight to board. It was indeed a full flight. They announced my group, 2 again and I got in line to board. Walked into the plane, and went to my seat 25A yet again! Sat down and waited for everyone else to board.
Soon it was time to depart ORD
. We backed out as the attendants did the safety briefing. We taxied out to the runway and we took off in typically ORD
We took off and cruised straight over Lake Michigan. Engine powered down then back up as we went over the shores of Lake Michigan. We then turned right and headed due course for PHL
Airport! I settled back and put my ipod on expecting a long flight. My friend who was picking me up, I told her to pick me up around 7:45pm or so as I was expecting delays out of ORD
too with taxi times and such. So we had it all planned out to the dot. With that I relaxed and watched the scenery go by as we flew on. They started the drink service, I had sprite and those premium mix snack, what the hell is so premium about that?! Anyhow I continued to snap pics as we flew by that was interesting.
We passed CLE
airport and I kind of started panicking because I was suspicious of how fast we were actually going and having just passed CLE
, airport and city... I knew and feared we would actually be landing real early now. This was the first time I did NOT want to land that early as friend wasn't expected to be at PHL
Airport until 7:45pm. There was nothing else to do but wait and see!
Soon my fears were confirmed within 20 minutes they announced we were beginning our approach into PHL
. This was at 6:15pm. We weren't due until 7:20pm, and my friend wasn't sked to be here till 7:45pm, CRAP.
Anyhow, we started the approach into PHL
and landed at 6:45pm. Damn it! So touch down was just about 30-40 minutes early. Way to go American, but not good for me! Dang. I must admit, was extremely impressed on the fact we managed to take off from ORD
right on time and maintain a steady flight time AND
land rather early!!! I assume a tailwind was evident on this flight? I just find it amazing they have a scheduled 2 hrs and 15 min flight when it remains to be just at 1 hr and 45 min or so of flight time including the take off and landing time!
We then swung off the runway and stopped. I saw one of the runways being used for take off and thank the lord I wasn't in line to take off. The intl/evening rush was in play and I saw at LEAST a good 20 or so planes in line to take off. Good lord. So I thought ok good maybe I can expect a lengthy taxi and give my friend time to arrive at the airport. What actually happened instead was our gate was in fact broken! Ya, broken lol. Pilot came on and said we are sitting now due to a broken jetbridge and was waiting for it to be fixed or a new gate to open. I am not entirely to sure.
We sat for 10 minutes before the plane started moving. Well, guess a gate had opened up for us! I texted my friend to announce we had landed and got a "your shitting me" I responded "Nope!" She said "your fucking early!" I said "I know!" she goes "you're not supposed to be early, you're supposed to be late and I'm still 40 minutes away from Philly!" I told her take her time, lucky for her I like being at airports and I"d use the extra time to walk around.
We pulled up to the gate and I took my sweet time in getting off the plane. I had been to PHL
before but was always on Southwest, so I had never seen this side of PHL
Airport before AA
was at Terminal A-East and I wanted to check West out. I got off the plane and simply headed down to the bag claim area while waiting for my friend to arrive and she did , 40 minutes later!
To conclude, AA
was good to me. To be honest and frank most airlines always are good to me. I worked in the airline business to understand things happen, and truly, a please, and thank you, always, always works for both of us, as a Customer/Passenger and as an employee. It never fails to say it and you almost always get a pleasant response back. I rarely ever have a bad experience on any airline that was directly, the airlines fault or any of the employees. AA
was no exception, and was great to fly them. Hope you enjoyed the report and feel free to leave comments or any questions you have for me to answer! Thanks for reading/viewing!