I almost got my postings finished on the free wi-fi at McCarran Airport (Bellingham Airport has free wi-fi now, too), but didn’t quite finish before loading time. And then we got back into the real world. But finally I will finish that trip off.
The airport experience went pretty well – lots of people but efficient, polite staff made it go pretty quickly and we ended up with a full two hours before takeoff.
While we were still sitting at the gate, I looked up to see one of the hosts (stewards? What are they called this week?) holding up something and after she put it down I realized that it might have been my favorite gray fleece vest. I hunted around under the seat and the vest was indeed missing, but by this time I couldn’t get anyone’s attention. The next time someone came down the aisle we were already taxiing away from the gate, and she told me that they had put the vest off the plane (for security reasons, I’m sure.)
I was very disappointed. I really like that vest and I have worn it just about every day, all year long for most of the eleven years we’ve been in Bellingham. (It says something meaningful about the climate here that every day of the year there is some time during the day that a fleece vest is an appropriate garment.) It is getting a bit threadbare and could stand to be replaced, but I have never found a direct replacement – most are heavier, or longer, or decorated somehow.
But it was a small price to pay for being clear of Las Vegas!
So I settled down to some reading to take my mind off the rising temperature in the plane as we taxied and then sat. I guess the plane’s “climate control” expects to be operating in temperatures considerable lower than 100 degrees outside (or more, considering the full sun slamming into the black tarmac). The little vents in the overhead were silent.
After awhile, the captain announced that they had experienced some anomaly involving “a warm start” of one of the engines and needed to have a mechanic look at something. Then she announced that would have to go back to the gate and would hook up an auxiliary air conditioner.
And, Miracle of Miracles, they would give us each a FREE glass of water! (Turned out to be about 2 ounces, but it’s the thought that counts.)
As we taxied back to the gate it occurred to me that I might be able to get my beloved vest back, if they hadn’t already turned it over to the bomb squad. So as soon as the “fasten seat belts” light went off I charged up to the front and they retrieved it from the jetway.
As it turned out we only lost about a half hour altogether and were soon on our way back to the Northwest. I love happy endings.
With any luck at all that will be our last trip to Vegas. I have already cleared all references to Allegiant Airlines from browser, and now we just have to find an appropriate time and venue for the ritual immolation of the Las Vegas street map.