Sunday, July 24, 2011

Flight Report: Part of the Great Human Migration (ARN-SEA)

After two years in Sweden, I just moved back to Seattle and the USA. While living in Sweden has been fantastic and a welcome experience, it's time to come back but for a brief moment I was without a home and in transit to somewhere else, just like millions of other people who are moving across the globe at any given time.

Of course, my story is much happier than many of the people who are part of this migration. All too often an immigrant story begins with the need to flee some form of oppression. Those who are lucky enough to not start their journey because of violence or oppression, do so to find a better life. They leave their world -family, friends, and a cultural context their familiar with- on the chance that somewhere they can build something better. This side of the great human migration is often lost in the context of current debates on immigration politics. In the end, people and their hopes are surprisingly the same even if norms and traditions differ.

In my case, my migration was two legs and relatively painless. From Stockholm to Newark and then onward to Seattle. After the break, what a Kosher meal looks like on Continental (United) along with a meal in domestic first class, and a few more shots along the way...

Headed out of Stockholm, we quickly ran into cloud cover, which prevented me from getting any really good shots of the area. The 757-200 is a bit smaller than I like for long haul flights, but it was far better than the 767 I was recently on coming back from Ulaanbaatar (which is a story for another day). As I usually do, I ordered a Kosher meal which is usually better than the regular meal.
Glatt Kosher on Continental. Turkey Schnitzel with Pasta.

Glatt Kosher Lunch on Continental. A Salmon and pickle sandwich. 

Arrival in EWR. Another fairly uneventful flight with a mediocre set of movies to choose from. Continental! Just because everyone loves Avatar doesn't mean you have to blow your whole in-flight entertainment budget on it. It's not that good. In fact, Avatar is just Dune meets Dances with the Wolves meets Fern Gully but less epic. Bleh.

On the ground at Newark. It's still odd to see all the Continental planes with United on them. The layover was a good 8 hours, after which it was time to depart again. The plane was stuck on the Tarmac for 45 minutes and then we were off.

 On Continental flights, they've decided that it's a great idea to offer DirecTV for your in flight entertainment. In first class, it's free, but back in economy it's $7 for the flight. I was lucky enough to get upgraded, but really what's the advantage to having DirecTV? Unlimited Jerseylicious?! Oh boy. Now I can watch beer commercials at 30,000 feet? That's very classy, Continental.

Meal time in first class. A salmon appetizer followed up by pasta with ricotta cheese, and a sundae. A whole cabin of full grown adults ordering ice-cream sundaes with cherries on top. Unfortunately, I didn't snag a picture of that.

A final view from the wing, and then this is what greeted me the next morning. It's beautiful here in Seattle and great to be back!

Welcome to Seattle

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