Tuesday, March 06, 2012

80s to Teens - LA to Anchorage

Sunday was in the 80s, even at Venice beach.  In this picture it was almost 5pm and was still warm with a lot of people on the beach - some even going into the chilly (55˚F -14˚C) ocean.

People were paying $9 to park their cars at 5pm to see the sunset.  The traffic was backed up for blocks.  The sort of situation when those of us on bikes feel a little smug.  The picture is from the Venice Beach parking lot at the end of Rose right at the Venice Boardwalk.  You can see the shadows are getting long as the sun is getting low.

In addition to the traffic, the gas prices were high.  (We saw $4.09 as we drove home from the airport in Anchorage.) I took this picture from the bus stop Monday (still warm but with clouds) as we waited for the afternoon bus to the airport.  (Yes, you can take the bus, but apparently you can't walk into the LA airport.)

And while there is free wifi in the Anchorage, Seattle, Portland, and San Francisco airports, I couldn't find it in LAX.
Lincoln and Rose
When we got to the airport, the good news was that we had been bumped up into first class.  I mentioned when we went down to LA that we had flown so much last year that we got MVP cards.  This MVP card has more benefits than I realized.  I didn't do anything, they just changed our seats. It also gets us on the plane earlier and gets us into a shorter security line. I'm not a hierarchical person - I don't like it when people are given status that suggests some people are better than others - because most such divisions tend to be superficial or even bogus.  And I don't see why people who have more money or fly more should get to cut in the security line.  Security is required by the US government and money shouldn't give you privilege for required government functions.  But that's a post of its own one day, maybe. 

On the connecting flight to Anchorage they put us in the exit row so we had lots of leg room.  And we checked in some baggage which we don't normally do.   But our 10:20 pm flight left about 40 minutes late and when you're due in at 1am, that gets to be a long day.  Then when we arrived we had to wait for a plane to be de-iced before we could get to the terminal.  Here we are sitting, waiting for 10 minutes, with a bit of snow still coming down. 

One reason we've checked in baggage - other than we were gone 5 weeks and had 2 bags each free check in with the MVP (and as others mentioned last time with the Alaska Club that any Alaskan can join free), is Alaska's 20 minute baggage guarantee. In the past we've waited for an hour for our luggage. Well, it was clearly more than 20 minutes this morning - and it was now 2:30am Anchorage time, 3:30am Pacific time - so I asked the baggage folks and they gave me the coupon for $20 off our next flight (or 2000 miles) that they offer if your baggage is over 20 minutes in coming.  While they apologized over the loudspeakers about the slow luggage, they didn't tell people to come get their coupons.  It does pay to read. 

Then there were no taxis outside.  Another 10 minutes until enough showed up to handle everyone.  And we were home at 3am or so. 

I've got a lunch meeting today, the garage door wasn't working when we got home, and the internet wasn't either. (The Internet I've obviously solved.)  So we have lots of catch up to do after our long absence.  Now I've got to shovel the driveway.  But yes, it's good to be home.


  1. Welcome home!
    We are headed to San Diego for a vacation later this month. Haven't been there since the early 1950s so I'm sure to see a lot I remember, lol.
    We are doing our first Road Scholar trip.

    Want to thank you for offering the blog class last spring through Ole. It helped my husband Joe tweak his blog and get me blogging. Without it I'd probably never started. Any interest in a follow-up workshop in the future? Just an idea.

  2. Glad you are back home, even with all the hassle.

    The same 80-degree temp difference happened one year when I went back to my apartment in NYC. It's better to be in So Cal for me now, and I almost called and resigned over the phone back then, but I sucked it up and went back to finish my graduate degree.

    Coincidentally, I am working for the guy I dated back then, and he said today that he was ready to move the company to Canada so we could get health insurance instead of going through the idiotic hoops we have to go through here in the US. I had to go to the doctor for the first time since 2007 two weeks ago for a chest infection and they said they didn't have my records from going to him since I was 16. I had to find another doctor and hope to not have to go to the doctor for another 5 years at least. The founder and his wife are paying 20K a year for health insurance in NYC and the other co-founder has to come on full time and has 3 kids. We are looking at 16K a year for him to have a 5K deductible each on the 5 family members in NJ. Let's look at why:


    Moving for medical insurance being screwed up, not because of regulations. Let's think about that for a minute....don't get me started on crappy wi-fi and cell service near the ocean, it's a pet peeve of mine (I'm looking at you, Ver:z0n).


Comments will be reviewed, not for content (except ads), but for style. Comments with personal insults, rambling tirades, and significant repetition will be deleted. Ads disguised as comments, unless closely related to the post and of value to readers (my call) will be deleted. Click here to learn to put links in your comment.