Location: Somewhere over the Pacific
I need to start with a mini-rant.
I have been in the air for three of the last four days: Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. I will leave off the carriers. But, let me say, ouch!!!. I know that airlines have reduced the number of flights and routes that has increased their occupancy rates, but why is it that the seats also seem to be getting smaller, the services less, and the fees greater. At one point I thought i was going to eat the headrest of the seat in front of me it was that close.
At last count there was a fee for baggage, fee to board early, fee for a particular seat, charge for alcohol (okay this one is not a problem), charge for food, next thing you know it is going to be a fee for air and water. Probably should not have said that as it will get someone to thinking.
The last flight was from San Fransisco to Auckland, New Zealand. I have to admit that this was the best of the bunch which followed the second worst flight, Chicago to San Francisco.
My only rant here is that I would prefer to pay one price to get on the plane, have space for my carry-on items (rather than all the people who carry one an entire wardrobe to save $25 in baggage fees), have a decent meal, and space for my butt. Wait, that is first class which is often 3 to 4 times as expensive as economy. I don't get the rate structure.
Back to the purpose of the blog
We left Chicago at 5:00 pm yesterday and arrived today at 4:00 am. Since we crossed the international date line we lost most of June 2nd. So, we start our journey exploring Middle Earth two days after we started. The flight over was relatively easy. Get up to altitude, have dinner, watch a movie (or two). Fall asleep for the evening. Wake up at 2:30 am, have breakfast, land at about 4:00 am. Get through immigration and customs by 6:30 am and we are on the way. Shuttle from the Airport to the hostel and we are in the room (at least I am by 7:45 am).
Unfortunately, for most of the students, their rooms were not ready so they are getting cleaned up and then it is off to the races.
More from today later.