Adios, 005 - last CO takeoff

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by violist, Mar 3, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    3/2/12 - a day which will live in, well, some kind of memory

    A tale of a couple hours in the lounge, a couple hours on
    the plane, rinse, repeat several times. All because desamo
    posted that people were going to be on the final Continental
    takeoff (but not the final CO landing, which I couldn't
    afford, at least in the style to which I am accustomed -
    good they were mutually exclusive).

    For some reason the Metro was running very nicely, so I got
    to the airport in time to think on "Fudd's or Five Guys?,"
    to which the answer was, as I passed the former site of
    Legal Seafood, Sam & Harry's. I'd eaten a really pretty
    tasty ribeye here and decided to go for the sirloin strip
    this time (for several more bucks). I should have been more
    mindful of my other Sam & Harry's experiences elsewhere,
    where the sirloin was not up to the quality of the other
    cut. Anyhow, a 10-oz steak a la carte is $25, extras being
    a relatively reasonable $4 each, sized, uncharacteristically
    for a steakhouse, for one.

    A nice, rather cute, smiling waitress.

    I had the house light ale, a mild but respectable brew,
    medium amber, almost opaque. Yeasty and a little bretty, but
    not unpleasant. I'd guess this was a Dominion product.

    The steak came, a thinnish cut, part of the tail attached,
    but, wonder of wonders, a good fat cap. Regular-looking, cut
    from frozen it appeared. Fairly tender, not too unjuicy,
    mot too flavorful, and I was super thankful for the good
    fat cap. Excellent for a supermarket steak; bordering on
    disappointment for $40 a pound. Extra rare as ordered, with
    half a head of roast garlic as the garnish (not so good as
    last time). A side of creamed spinach didn't come; the
    explanation was that "she's making a fresh batch." The fresh
    batch eventually came. It's not rocket science to make: thaw
    some chopped, half a pack per person, cook until tender, add
    random dairy product, microwave until hot. strew with grana,
    eh walla. In this case step 2 was omitted, and the spinach
    was on the tough side.

    A pretty expensive lunch, and only moderately good. By the
    time I left the place was full of people eager to spend wads
    of money.

    Security was pretty breezy, although as has happened several
    times they detected something at my waistline. The TSA's
    jokey way of telling me to lose a few pounds, I think, or
    else I shuck my dirttails in imperfectly.

    The club was moderately busy. I went to my oasis, the work
    carrels at the far end, where the guy two carrels down I'd
    seen here a couple weeks ago, horrors, or was it in Philly,
    worse? Same ugly tie.

    The snack here today was Milanos.

    You know what's better than Milanos? Mint Milanos. Haven't
    seen these in a while. They were common in the early '70s
    and then disappeared for a few years, then returned, and
    now I don't know what has happened to them again. By the
    way, orange milanos are wretched.

    Alterra coffee tastes like train brakes smell.
    desamo and sobore like this.
  2. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    :D Sounds great.
  3. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    US3379 DCA DFW 1325 1602 ER7 3A

    I zooped down to the gate right at boarding time to find
    no plane parked. Presently it showed up, and we took off
    what, 30 late. I rather enjoyed the F retrofitted on the RJ.
    The seat was pretty nice, and the FA was pretty nice but not
    very available as she was back in coach for much of the
    trip. The trip was scheduled for 3h 37, so I expected a
    mealy sort of thing, but what came was the usual basket, out
    of which I had the usual Biscoffs and a packet of cranberry
    nut mix. Glenlivet was the high point of the flight.

    A pretty view when we were just above the clouds - more
    contrails than usual, I thought. Interesting cloud
    formations, too. Apparently we were skirting thunderheads
    and went way farther south than normal. Quite a few bumps in
    spots. We pulled into the gate almost exactly an hour late.

    The United club is off at the other end of the concourse (at
    least it's in the same one). The Skylink takes just a couple
    minutes, and I was behind a nourishing supper of Walker's
    shortbread and Beam in good time.

    US 545 DFW PHX 1830 2010 321 1A

    F-f-for s-s-shome reason the trek back was longer than the
    trip over, and I made it to about the middle of boarding,
    by which time there was barely room in the overhead for my
    very modest-size bag. After collapsing into my seat I told
    the cute rather zaftig blonde FA to give me a double
    Glenlivet, and I would not bother her for the rest of the
    flight, and so it was. On landing, heartfelt thanks to her
    and a walk down the concourse to the low A club, where
    presently Wandering Aramean came by, and we went upstairs to
    partake of a few doses of inky liquid and/or suds. The plan was
    to head out when the place closed at 10, but WA got a text from
    fenx, who was at the other terminal sans ticket. We hopped
    the bus there, and WA found him a gate pass; we continued
    our socializing at the gate, where nothing of note was
    apparently happening. Oh, at the ticket counter, WA made a
    hit with the staff, who had been settling into a nostalgic
    funk; his enthusiasm was rewarded by smiles and a piece or
    two of Continental memorabilia.

    At the gate our numbers were increased by desamo (the prime
    mover of this exercise) and steve64. We had a good time
    becoming acquainted and then after those formalities getting
    to the real business of the day, discussing miles and points
    and stuff.

    As Shannon had said, there wasn't going to be any
    commemorative hoopla; WA did his best to create some, which
    earned incredulity from the assembled crowd (it was actually
    not that heavy a flight) and I believe gratitude from the
    employees. He hung back chatting with them and thus became
    the last passenger ever to board a CO flight.
  4. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    The trip itself, uneventful
    The flight took off a few minutes late after the impromptu
    celebrations. I believe an announcement was made on board,
    but I was in a certain state of dimness by this time so
    cannot be sure.

    CO1267 PHX CLE 2359 0546 738 7F

    There hadn't been any saver F awards (or whatever they are
    called these days), and I didn't feel like paying 25000
    extra miles for one 4-hour flight. My colleagues all
    ended up up front, through whatever instruments or
    instrumentalities, but as I had the bulkhead row all to
    myself, and was planning to sleep anyway, no worries, and I
    actually slept pretty well after all the alcohol this day.
    I'm sure it was a fine flight.

    Afterward, the four of us had breakfast and a couple daycaps
    at the club before dispersing to go our separate ways,
    Wandering Aramean to deliver more of the goody bags that he
    had prepared to sweeten the transition for the overworked
    employees and the put-upon frequent flyers, steve64 and
    myself to our flights, and desamo to Cleveland, of all places.

    UA4167 CLE BWI 0835 0958 E45 2A

    Overheard at the gate. Apparently Premier Access gets you
    zone 5, which understandably flummoxed and annoyed one guy
    who thought he actually had been granted some kind of

    As I should have figured out when boarding with zone 1, it
    gets mighty windy when the catering door is open. Ah well,
    heavy the head and all that. Speaking of which I slept
    through, staggered out, and as I left the FA thanked me
    by name.

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