On Travelling

With the exception of one delayed flight, my air travel this summer has been flawless.  As I’m used to reading posts about how terrible security was, how hideous the immigration officials were or how dreadful the luggage delay was, I’ll post something good about air travel, a series of open letters.

Dear Canadian Border Agent at YVR

Yes from the look of our passports, we’d clearly entered Canada quite a few times in the last year.  We appreciated it when you didn’t tell us where to go or what to take with us – it was nice to arrive and feel like we knew what was going on.

Dear US Border Agent at SFO

You were awesome.  You proved that it was possible to do a job like yours and have a sense of humour and professionalism.  You made us laugh and you made us feel welcome in your state.  I didn’t even mind getting all my finger prints taken, although I was trying very hard not to giggle when my photo was taken.  It made a difference.

Dear US Customs Guy at SFO

Yep, you were right, we did get a teensy bit tipsy up in Sonoma Valley.  We looked alarmed when you asked ‘what is the purpose of your visit to the US’ because you immediately yelled ‘you’re gonna get drunk in wine country’.  It was mildly alarming, after a long flight and all, but again you made us feel quite welcome in your state.

Dear Cabin Crew on the LHR-SFO round trip

I can understand why you look exhausted after an 11 hour flight, and I don’t think I’ve ever been on a flight with so many drinks services.  As a suggestion, if your plane has been sitting, full, at the gate for 2 hours prior to take off, it might be an idea to loose the cheesy President of United/Continental video thing and just get on with the safety talk.  I couldn’t work a long haul trip so hats off to you.

Dear Family at LHR

I get that having many young daughters is fun and that gearing them up for an 11 hour flight is a big deal so perhaps the matching outfits were a winner.  I’m less certain of why mom had to dress up in the same way though.  That was a little creepy and made me wonder: were the kids shopping in moms shop or does mom shop in the kids store?  And matching outfits right down to the pink trainers and backpacks? A little peculiar.  You may find that the good folks of England stare at you a little as you wander around town in your leggings and tutu skirts, all matching like that.  Have a great holiday all the same.

Dear Check-in Lady at SFO

Thank you for being lovely.

Dear BA (YVR-LHR trip)

Thanks for the upgrade.  Not sure about the economy plus seats though, couldn’t figure out the (complex) settings to get just that normal level of in flight comfort.  Being able to stretch my legs out full in front of me was wonderful though.

Dear Airlines in General

Glee on the VOD is not good for my mental health when trapped in a flying tin can at 38,000 feet.  Particularly not 4 episodes back to back.  I giggle far too much for those poor souls trying to sleep around me.

So there you have it – we went on two trips to North America and the people we encountered at the airport were lovely.  Even security.  No special security screening on this trip but on previous trips its been an advantage – we’ve always been taken straight to the head of the queue and been through faster despite all the wanding and swabbing of laptops.