August 30th, 2010

Conrunner Kevin

Casting Off

I'll be leaving for the train station on the first leg of the Australia trip in a few minutes. (Train to BART to SFO.) I may be able to get online again from SFO, where I should have at least two hours between the time I check in and when my flight leaves. I change planes in Sydney tomorrow, but don't expect to be there long enough to post anything there.

I spoke with Lisa last night. Kuma Bear is sad they're not traveling, but I told Lisa thanks again for letting me make this trip.
Manga Kevin

First Lap, First Class

What with leaving for the train station early on account of being so antsy to get started, having to walk from the Coliseum Amtrak station over to the BART station, having to wait for the station agent to re-code my ticket so it would actually work after the balk last weekend, and having to change trains at Balboa Park, it took around 2 1/2 hours to get to SFO, but that's about what I expected.

My thanks to Lisa for suggesting that I should be able to couple my two large bags together. I could indeed do that. Having nearly a maximum train-wait at Coliseum, I took a picture of what the luggage train looked like.

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While the Airport BART station is not convenient to much of SFO, it's terribly convenient if you're flying United International, as their check-in counters are nearest the BART gates. As I approached, I got a little worried because the check-in signs were talking about flight to London and Frankfurt. I went down to the First Class line and wouldn't you know that it was the only place that was busy? It's apparently also where special groups are checked in, and there were a bunch of people there. Another agent came down and waved me to the Business Class check in counter, where there was nobody. I was way early for the flight, after all.

The agent confirmed that this was indeed where to check in for the Sydney flight, and when I pointed out what the signs over his head said, he said, "Oops, nobody changed them. I'll tell them after I check you in."

Checking my bags was routine, and there was no wait for me to enter the security area. It's a very quiet night at SFO. It took me quite a while to decompose myself for Security, what with carrying a laptop and a CPAP and also having the Magic Bag of Liquids. Worse, I couldn't seem to clear the metal detector, which must have been turned up to read-your-fillings levels. Eventually I managed to get through and put myself back together again.

By then I was starting to feel a little faded out and considered buying dinner at one of the places air-side, but decided to go ahead and go to the Lounge instead, given that it's probably the only time in my life that I'll ever be able to be here. This was the correct choice.

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I availed myself generously of the food, including noodles, sushi, shrimp, cheese, and fruit. Along with a couple of cups of coffee (since I need to stay awake for a couple of hours after we take off as part of the anti-jet-lag program), I felt much better.

I fiddled around with the wi-fi for a while, got my e-mail, and somehow managed to get the photos uploaded, slowly. Don't expect me to send lots of photos if my connectivity is like this the rest of the trip.

They're shutting down the food bar because my flight boards in maybe 20 minutes, so it's last orders here. Next stop: Sydney (briefly), then Melbourne. Thanks for the good wishes people have sent me.