Thursday, 25 August 2011

Travelog part 4

10:41pm. Flight was due to depart 21:00, but at least we're sitting in the plane now. Looks like we'll be departing two down... two hours, that is. Fortunately it's not hard to catch up some time across a seven hour journey; we'll see what time we land in Dubai. Still have no idea what the cause of the delay is, but frankly, I'd rather have a delayed departure than some of the, uhh, oddities that we saw in US domestic flights.

10:51pm. Michael and I attempt to sync our ices to watch Dawn Treader together. We mused earlier today as to whether or not it would be more fun if these systems had a "show me what seat B9 is seeing" feature; it'd spoil the fun of syncing, but it would be easier to watch movies together.

10:53pm. Captain's announcement hints that the delay was due to a safety issue, but doesn't say what. Another announcement a bit later has some electronic screech in the background, so one of the cabin crew goes forward to give the captain some feedback feedback.

10:59pm. Pushback.

11:20pm. The optional, but very much enjoyable, part of flying. The mandatory part is scheduled for six hours from now, which implies that we'll be catching up an hour during the journey.

01:54am. The modern Voyage of the Dawn Treader movie is pretty good, as long as you like modern movies and have never read the book. Otherwise, not so much.

05:10am. This flight is supposed to have mobile phone support, but I've been unable to get to it with my 3G stick from England, my pocket wifi from home, nor Michael's phone. None of them get signal. It's very disappointing, Dame Hannah. Oh well. We're now descending, so I'll try the whole thing again on the next leg - if the option's there. Oh, and I forgot to get out the green cable to try the ethernet port, although it didn't do me much good on the outward trip.

05:38am. Landed - local time 08:38am. We were due to land at 07:05 local time, which means we've caught up a good half hour - but we're still quite late. Not a problem to us personally, but two passengers are moved to the very front of Economy to facilitate a hasty transfer, and the captain apologizes to us all. I'm still curious as to what delayed us two hours. Pulling in to the terminal is delayed somewhat too - possibly we've lost our path.

06:52am. Whoops, forgot to post while I had wifi. We're now boarding for the non-stop leg Dubai to home. Time to reset clocks to Melbourne time; it's now 3:52pm. (There goes most of Wednesday. No wonder we're landing on Thurs after taking off on Tues.)

04:11pm. Had some trouble fitting our stuff in the overhead lockers, but two rows ahead is a family that seems to have crammed four people into three seats or something, so the cabin crew have done some rejigging and are moving them southward. We may now have a bit more room upstairs.

04:33pm. Pushback. You'd think that after a century of commercial flight we'd have sorted this out, but it still takes a long time to get planes into and out of the air.

04:47pm. Takeoff. The downward camera gives us a beautiful view of our own shadow in the moments after we leave the ground - first the nose, then progressively the whole aircraft.

06:57pm. The ethernet port is just as useless as on the outward journey. I wonder - maybe it's a NAT router that connects to a 10.* or 192.168.* network with no advertised DNS? Be hard to figure anything out without docs. I'd say it's an unimplemented feature, still.

11:40pm. A couple of suggestions for Emirates' ice system, which I'll be emailing them once I get an internet connection (which will probably be on landing in MEL). First, please change the font to one that properly differentiates 3 and 5 - the two are quite similar. And second, consider implementing the "show me what my friend is seeing" feature :)

02:24am. Crossing the coast at Geraldton, with ETA in under three hours. This is what happens when you don't have to accel out of Perth - cuts a whole hour off the flight time.

04:45am. Captain's just announced that we'll be descending soon. According to the map, we've only just passed Adelaide. Australia's a big place, but we're moving at quite a clip... and we're still enjoying 200km/h tail winds. In spite of departing Dubai somewhat late, we're going to be landing in good time - about ten minutes early, even.

05:48am. HOME!! Just waiting for David to find his bag.

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