Friday, November 9, 2007

A Long Day

My hotel room in Portland overlooked one of the main streets in downtown and at 3:30 in the morning I was awakened by a street-sweeper followed by a garbage truck doing the morning rounds. Our pick up time from the hotel was just before 8:00 AM and the driver was right on time. Most of the time the hotels provide the transportation but today it was a contracted service. The drive to the airport took a few minutes extra due to heavy morning fog.

Todays flying was scheduled for Portland to DFW, then on to IND (Indianapolis) and then back to DFW. This was to be a very long day. Pilots are only allowed to be scheduled for up to 8 hours of flying in one day and today was right at 8 hours.

We launched with a full plane for DFW right after this Alaska Airlines MD-80 landed.

The climb to the East was out over the Columbia River again and then a slight turn to the Southeast and a nice view of Mt Hood from my window. Boise, Salt Lake City, Grand Junction and Amarillo were the bigger cities we would overfly.

Three hours later we were in Texas again and loading another full flight to Indianapolis. On this leg we had a pilot from another airline riding in the cockpit with us. Pilots are afforded this privilege between many airlines at no cost. He had just arrived from Kuwait and was heading back to his home in Indiana. His airline has a government contract to carry our troops back and forth from the Middle East. Every day at DFW we see many soldiers either on their way home for a short leave or on their way back to the desert. Whenever we have any of them on our flights, our agents will do everything possible to provide them with a first class seat.

A routine flight to IND and back and the day was finally over. Now for 3 days off!!

Thanks for reading.

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