So, at 10:48 a.m. I found myself all through check in thanks to the help of a female employee. She took my ticket and punched it into the computer, had some problems with it, corrected the problems and handed me my boarding pass all within 5 minutes. A quick check through security which took all of 3 minutes and I was on way to the gate. For anybody who will fly United, Gate B21 is clear on the other side of nowhere. If it gives you any idea, I checked through security around gate 3. I got my exercise getting to B21. It was clearly marked so that wasn't the problem. It just took me a bit to get there. THEN they changed gates on me. For the next 30 minutes the flight to Salt Lake City bounced between Gates 19 – 22. It changed a total of 4 times before it settled on gate 20. There was only a slight delay before boarding since the plane was arriving late. Eventually I got on the plane and waited for what seemed like forever before we were in the air. Taxing took a long time. Long enough for people to play musical seats. There were two couples who wanted to sit together but their tickets weren't tgogether. Once they found out that nobody was in the seats ahead of us, they moved there. That was good for me since it meant I didn't have anybody sitting next to me and I could spread out a bit more, etc.
So, here it is 1:43 p.m., I think I'm still in central time, and I'm looking out the window at flat clouds. Why is it that all the pretty fluffy clouds are usually only seen on take off? They are seen when we can't take out our cameras and take a pix. NOW I can see the flatlands of the clouds. Not much of an improvement. I went from flat cornfield land to flat cloud land. Looking out, it's like an extra light desert. I can imagine a wind sweeping through the clouds and moving them into little sand dunes...or cloud dunes.
Things got better though and soon I went from flatland clouds to semi fluffy clouds. THEN I started to see the land. I had reached the mountains. It wasn't long before the captain announced that we would be landing in Salt Lake City. From the air I could see the chiseled topped mountains leading down into the valleys. Most of the mountains were brownish but as we got closer you could start to see the patchwork landscaping. Periodic greens and reds interspersed by a river or road.
Despite the almost 45 degree banking that the plane took to approach the landing strip, the landing was smooth and going through scurity was a breeze. I noticed that John had called me to see if I had landed yet and soon we had figured out where each of us was. I recognized John right away because I had seen pictures of him once or twice before. It wasn't long before we were in the car and had started up a convesation. Not sure if it was just that we liked talking or that it was to cover up some nervousness or perhaps a bit of both? Either way it was a delightful drive. We went to The Pie, a pizza place which has great pizza. It took 20 minutes to bake so I snapped some pix and they are posted on my fotki site.
More on the vacation later.