Sunday, December 4, 2011

Clear Air Turbulence, Canadian Airspace. 12/04/11, approximately 8.30 a.m.

In my hundreds and hundreds of flights I have never experienced the kind of turbulence faced earlier today, somewhere northwest of Niagara, in Canadian airspace. I was on JA735A, a fully-loaded 777-381, operated by ANA. I was just stepping into the restroom when the plane dropped. I was lifted off my feet but was able to grab the handicap bar (yes, this is a plane meant for Japanese clientele and they care about such things) which prevented me from flying up to the restroom ceiling. I wasn't even able to shut the door - I just sat down on the toilet and yes, the previous (Japanese) passenger had lowered the lid over the toilet bowl. It was too shaky to get back to my seat so I just hung on and "rode the wave".

This is why one should always, always wear a seatbelt while seated. Clear air turbulence is amazing. 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Manchu Wok

Manchu Wok by gate A25 in DFW gets the award for most tasteless noodles. Their pepper chicken is not bad. Orange chicken has too much batter and not enough chicken.

Grade: C

Friday, September 23, 2011

Satellite re-entry

Urgent Airmen Notification - Satellite Re-entry
Notice Number: NOTC3252

Until September 26, 2011
U.S. airspace and territories
Specific instructions and restrictions are available from normal NOTAM sites and local air traffic facilities.

*For the latest information, call your local Flight Service Station at 1-800-WX-BRIEF

Amitava "Chats" Chatterjee
Sent from my iPad

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Bad seating

So who designed this seating, really? What was the point in forcing people's legs into each other? Didn't realize matchmaking and footsie was part of the travel ribbon #Fail
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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Best airport Chinese Food award!!!!

The best Airport Chinese Food award goes to Panda Express in DCA concourse B, opposite gate 28. Good Kung Pao chicken. good Orange chicken. Good vegetables, relatively crisp. They always have chopsticks and the staff are friendly to boot!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Leica M9 Battery Issue

I'm having bizarre battery issues with my M9. Pop in a fully charged battery. Camera says "battery low". No pattern to the issue. Occurs with my two genuine nine month old batteries. Anyone else having this problem? I wrote to Leica Technical who claimed no knowledge of this issue. I have seen some posts on the Internet complaining about this exact same issue. Very sad to see such poor performance in a $7000 machine. Is this „Deutsche Gruendlichkeit"?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Inconvenient airports

There are airports and then there are airports whose sole purpose in life seems to be to inconvenience the harried travelers transiting through them. Left with no choice (you aren't going to take your flight from a different airport) one is forced to resign oneself to one's fate.

I thought DFW Dallas was bad. You get to security, unload your possessions in plastic tubs, push them to the head of the line and then traverse a gap of four to five feet (times three, for the average traveler with laptop, toiletries, carry-on, laptop bag). I cannot imagine my mother having to go through such hassle.

So, remember that I said I thought Dallas was bad? Well, BOD Bordeaux is worse. You traverse a four foot gap TWICE per item or plastic tub. I mean, what the f***? Merde. Which yahoo designed this securité, s'il vous plait? Trou du cul.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Who designed this seating?

Nothing says traveler comfort like seating that forces your legs into the path of your seat mate. Way to go, DFW Terminal C.
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Monday, June 13, 2011

Things one should not eat on planes

The other day, Elite Travel Gal Stacy Small tweeted her experience with a seat mate who opened a can of tuna. I can only imagine how it must have smelled.

Today, someone in 9A is eating a breakfast burrito, redolent with the smells of factory-farmed eggs, plastic cheese and sausage made from meat steamed off the carcass. I think I'm going to be sick.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Sunday, June 12, 2011

I achieved a milestone and didn't even know it

The other day I was asked if I was a million miler. I said I didn't think so, since I remembered seeing 800K odd miles on one of my frequent flier accounts. Today, I tallied up the miles in all my accounts and realized I have flown 1.4M Seat Butt Miles. If I lived on the west coast, I'd probably have double or triple that amount.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Inaugural "Worst Airport Chinese Food" entry

Location: DFW/KDFW

Establishment: blue bamboo xpress

From Blogsy Photos

From Blogsy Photos

Items ordered: Lunch Plate Combo, Vegetable Spring Roll, Wonton Soup, Aquafina

Review: Not only can they not spell, their food is awful to boot. The meats were dry. The rice was dry. The soup was made with cheap, cheesy, chicken bouillon base. They didn't even have trays. For a meal that cost $25, this place is the pits.

Score: 0.5 out of 5

Best part of the meal: Aquafina

Thursday, May 26, 2011

On being bitten badly by insects at the AAirport

This is a first for me. In my years of traveling, flying hundreds of flights, in many countries all over the world, I have never been slaughtered by insects. This happened to me today. Not in India. Not in Africa. It happened in the business class lounge of a major US AAirline in Dallas DFW.

I was quietly biding my time - the AAirline had cancelled my 630p departure and put me on its 935p flight instead. I was reading the WSJ when out of the corner of my eye, I saw what appeared to be a tiny cockroach walking up my shirt. I immediately crushed it, and hurriedly got up to walk out of the lounge. Something made me go to the restroom on my way out, and I looked in the mirror. My face/cheeks and neck were covered in tiny red bites that had started to swell. This has never happened to me. I started to sweat and my face felt hot and puffy. On my way out I told the club receptionist what hAAppened. She offered to call me a paramedic but I had to get to my gate and board.

When I reached my plane, I asked the flight AAttendant if she had any medicine for insect bites. She appeared unconcerned when I told her what happened, and told me she could not dispense medicines. She did say I could see a doctor in DFW tomorrow if I wished. I'm really unsure how that could help since I was onboard a flight waiting to fly to DCA.

This sucks.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Blogsy test

This is a test of a new mobile blogging platform.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

"Best airport to be stuck in" Award. 04.16.11.

04.16.11. Bad weather in DCA. So I'm stuck in BOS. Been here for six hours already.
 They say I left but GIDS is lying. We are going to be here for atleast another TWO HOURS.
BOS Gate A10 GIDS Display

Fortunately, BOS has free wi-fi AND in-seating area power so my BlackBerry, Laptop, Bluetooth Earpiece and iPad are all juicing up!
BOS Seat Power System - AC Mains Power AND USB! Who designed this airport? Pure Genius.

... and, the icing on the cake... I have LOBSTAH ROLLS!
Lobstah Roll. So much better than some of the cud other airports try and pass off as "Food".

I can easily say "BOS gets the "Best Airport to be Stuck In" Award!". Yay!

Friday, April 15, 2011

DL4980. KDCA-KBOS. 041511.

This CRJ700 has one toilet in the back... The toilet stinks and the flush does not work. Thank God I'm in First.

Amitava "Chats" Chatterjee
Sent from my iPad

DCA on a Friday evening

DCA on a Friday evening looks a little tired and weary. Fortunately there is not a whole lot of traffic. Noisy, though. A mishmash of acoustic data points to process, because it is so hard to ignore. Right now I can hear chopsticks clicking, babies crying, people laughing, and someone loudly protesting against baggage fees. Yay frequent flyer perks, I guess.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Thursday, April 14, 2011

AA364. KDFW-KDCA. 041411.

This plane smells like McDonald's. In other news, the flight will be FULL of character aka bump bump bump. Woo hoo! Second of four flights this week about to get under way.
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An MD80 is a very noisy airplane. The top set of readings are from the backend and the second set from the midsection #OwMyEarsHurt


This past Monday's flight from DCA to DFW was amazing. Spectacular turbulence with lots of shaking and shuddering. We were being tormented by convective SIGMETs between FL180-300 and had to take an atypical southerly course to get to our destination.

Saturday, April 9, 2011