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2010 TRIP TO ENGLAND, by Colin L. Miller

Intro June 10 June 11 June 12 June 13 June 14 June 15 June 16 June 17 June 18 June 19 June 20 June 21 June 22 June 23 June 24 June 25 June 26 Expense Report

SATURDAY, JUNE 26, 2010: LONDON TO ARIZONA

I got up at 7:00, and made breakfast from my leftover snacks. Then, after a final check of the small room & bathroom, I returned to the lobby and turned in the keycard. It was sunny and warm and the streets were crowded with pedestrians and cars. I made my way over to the nearby Queensway station and down to the westbound platform. At 8:03, I was on the Central Line train, and two minutes later off at the next station, Notting Hill. I transferred to District Line South and arrived at Earl's Court station at 8:32, for the next transfer, to Picadilly Line west to Terminal 4. I arrived at Terminal 4 at 9:19, and exited the Underground station. Upstairs, I got my boarding passes from a kiosk and got in line at the security and passport checkpoints. In the terminal, I had about 10 in bills and more in coin, so I stopped at a Boots Pharmacy to get another two doses of sumatriptan: -7.99. Then I got some snacks and a bottle of water at the nearby newsstand store, -2.99. That took care of the paper money, leaving 14.74 in coins.

I was at Gate 2 by 10:00 I still had over an hour to wait before boarding, so I tended to my runny nose, watched the action out the windows, walked around and waited some more. Finally the call for my boarding group came, and after a boarding pass and passport check, I went through some long jetway corridors to Continental flt. CO5, a Boeing 777-200ER. My seat was 41A on the left side in the rear. I discovered that I had good legroom due to the shape of the tail end of the aircraft, and possibly other factors.

At 12:17, the big jet was finally in the air, heading northeast not far from Carlisle and then between Ireland and Scotland and the Atlantic Ocean. A drink service was provided, followed later by a meal: chicken marinara. I noticed that my allergy was subsiding, finally. We tracked west along with the sun until we started heading southeast through Quebec and then in the USA: over central Ohio & Kentucky, western Tennessee, then a turn to avoid Mississippi along the eastern edge of Arkansas, through northern Louisiana, and into Houston. There was a 2nd meal service, but I declined as I had planned since June 10 (when I has here last) to get lunch at one of the concourse's food courts.

The plane's wheels touched the runway at 9:49 pm BST, or six hours earlier for local time, at 3:46 pm CDT. So, we were in the air for 9 hours 32 minutes. Ten minutes later I was off the plane at IAH Gate 18. As usual, it was a long walk to the baggage claim, security & passport checks area. I eventually made it through all the lines and back into the concourse. I found the Panda Express that I missed the first time and got my meal, $-7.60. I still had time before my next flight, so I made a phone call home, then I rode the automated tram to the other terminal.

At 5:15 I arrived at Gate B69, which was a group of gates at the end of a long corridor in the concourse. It was very crowded including electric carts ferrying passengers in and out. I rested on the floor against the wall and watched a video on the netbook. An hour later, I was on Continental flt. CO2383, an RJ145, seat 17A. I had to check my large bag at the gate since the overhead bins were too small for it. At 6:51 I was in the air and heading for home.

The regional commuter jet touched down at Tucson International Airport (TUS) at 7:55 pm CDT / 6:55 local time (1 hour 4 minutes in the air). I got off at gate B9 and made my way out past the baggage claim and to the shuttle van roadside stop where a van was waiting. A few minutes later I was off at my truck, right where I'd left it. I paid $75.22 (and a $2 tip to the van driver), and I was on the road for a 75-minute drive home.


Intro June 10 June 11 June 12 June 13 June 14 June 15 June 16 June 17 June 18 June 19 June 20 June 21 June 22 June 23 June 24 June 25 June 26 Expense Report