Tuesday, September 07, 2010

A Delightful Flying Adventure!

Having flown a lot in the last few months, I can honestly say that it's not my favorite thing to do, but I don't mind it...I find you just have to set your expectations a bit low.

Great Service
I rarely write to customer service to complain about bad service on airlines anymore. The last couple of times I got back a cursory response that basically said "sorry."

But I have no problem writing to a customer service department when someone goes out of their way to be helpful. And it's happened again.

One of the legs of flying I do each week is from Calgary to Seattle (and now will be Edmonton to Seattle), and I fly on Horizon Airlines (AKA Alaska Airlines). It is one of the highlights of my flying time.

I liked this airline right away when I realized they fly planes that use less fuel and they use only recycled napkins for their in-flight service. They also serve local beer and wine (complimentary), and while I don't drink, I like that they support their local economies.

This past week, I was very careful to make sure I didn't leave my new nook or my knitting on the plane, but wasn't quite so careful about my cell phone. I realized it after I got a few hundred yards into the terminal at Seattle, and went back to the gate agent.

She radioed the ground crew, who had already found the phone and sent it to gate C4H (or some such thing) and the gate agent personally walked me over to the gate, went down to the tarmac to retrieve my phone and brought it back up to me.

To prove it was my phone, I showed her my wallpaper was my cat Nico, and she told me Nico looked liked a beloved pet she had lost about a year previously. We discussed pets for a bit, and I went off to catch my Philadelphia flight home.

It was a delight to fly with them and get to meet this gate agent. I'll look forward to my weekly trips to Seattle from now on.

Current Knitting
I've finished the increases on the sleeve and have another couple of inches to knit before knitting the sleeve cap and shoulder band.

It should be no problem finishing the sleeves this week. I brought the entire sweater (in pieces) with me to Edmonton, so I should be able to start assembling it during this week.

In addition, I also had some pre-work for a Men's Knitting Retreat workshop that I need to have ready for the retreat on the 16th...I can't believe it's so soon!

I had to knit five swatches...I'm a little less than half finished, but I should be able to bang them out quickly.  Although I do have to wash and block them before flying out for work this coming Monday.

Readers' Comment's Questions
Mel writes, "*ahem* While his bearing is definitely regal, I do believe Nico could benefit from shedding a bit of avoirdupois."

And Mel should know as the in-house blogging veterinarian. Yes, Nico has never missed a meal...he really likes his food. We have been slowly reducing his intake, and it is helping, but Thaddeus has difficulty refusing that beautiful face.

There were a number of questions about the new e-reader (nook).

I compared the nook and the Kindle, and liked a few things better with the nook. The battery can be replaced without returning the entire unit. I can share my e-books with other nook users. It has a touch-screen at the bottom. I honestly don't know who has a better selection of books (my bet is that Amazon would win on that comparison) and I know nothing about Barnes & Noble's financial difficulties, so that definitely didn't play into my decision.

As far as not being able to use the e-readers during take-off and taxi, I haven't found this to be a problem at all. It's a relatively short period of time when I usually prefer to nap anyway. The average price for the e-books are around $10, although some of the newer books are $15 and there are a lot of e-books for under $10 as well (including a crappy free book I downloaded last week, and I'm now forcing myself to read).

I loved Bev's suggestion about using a zip-lock baggie for time when I read around water. I decided to buy an extended warranty which covers me for one dunk in the bathtub...if I use up that insurance, I'll start using a zip-lock. Thanks for the idea.

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