Getting there

It’s been a couple of years since we traveled by air so it was interesting to see how things have changed when we flew to Seattle last week.

The first leg of any air travel for us starts with getting to Logan Airport, which is 64 miles away, and parking there runs between $29-38 a day.

We are lucky. We have a bus, C&J, that we can pick up here in town and be dropped off right at the door to the terminal. We use it every time for $48 round trip per person, but parking in their lot is almost nonexistent. If you want a car for when you return, you have to shop around for a space the day before. Two vehicles to the lot, one parked, one returned, a ride to the bus the next day, and we were all set to return at midnight. Easy, peasy.

We flew Jet Blue from Boston to Seattle because it was non-stop, and the seats have a little more leg room. For the first time, we paid for checking one bag each – $120 round trip to have clothes.

Boarding the plane was done from the front to the back, which even with a seat assignment, made it like a herding cattle through a chute. The outbound trip was only a few minutes late, but the return flight was almost 40 minutes late because of boarding.

Every seat back has a screen with a multitude of viewing choices. The bluish light flashes all around, and since you can see a multitude of screens from your seat, I can report that Keanu Reeves in “John Wick” is quite popular.

A side effect of all these screens is that 100% of the window shades are pulled down so the light doesn’t interfere with viewing. It made me feel like I was encapsulated in a large tube. Gone are the days of gazing at the clouds or the skylines.

Flight attendants, male or female, use to look like they could have found work as models. Wow – that has changed dramatically. Although every person we encountered was professional and helpful, there were people close to my age with bodies that bumped both sides of the aisle when they tried to move about the cabin.

Cost of food at the airports still borders on larceny, and the quality is still mediocre.

Moving through security is challenging, but we can’t complain because we have Global Entry, and it moves quite smoothly. It’s worth every penny of its $100 cost.

There is just the luck of the draw as to whether you have two screaming babies and one extremely unhappy toddler all within two aisles of your seat, and I won’t even mention, the coughing, sneezing, and sinus clearing.

We even rode a train in Seattle to get from the terminal to the gate.

Travel time is around 6 hours by plane and 46 hours by car – pretty simple choice. But, that was a lot of humanity even for a retired HR professional.

Have a great first week in October. If you’re flying somewhere, I hope it leaves on time, there’s space in the overhead bin, an empty seat next to you (almost never), and you have a great time.

Me? After planes, trains, buses, and automobiles – I’ll be outside all by myself with my shovel and pruning shears for company. πŸ™‚

About Judy@NewEnglandGardenAndThread

Master Gardener who enjoys gardening, quilting, photography, and traveling.
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62 Responses to Getting there

  1. Thanks for the preview of a JetBlue flight. We chose an upgraded ticket thats includes 2 – 50# bags for a flight to Orlando. Well worth the extra cost.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. bikerchick57 says:

    Judy, while I don’t mind air travel, it’s not my favorite thing to do…probably because of the cost of everything, making sure I abide by the rule of liquids in 2 oz containers, going through security, etc. It sounds, though, that you have had enough experience to make things easier when you travel across the country and that makes for a pleasant experience (if you take out the coughing, baby, screaming variables). I like to find the non-stop flights and especially want to avoid Chicago O’Hare. That place scares me! πŸ˜‰

    I hope you had a wonderful trip and enjoy the outside today.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. A friend of mine, retired AA pilot, said that “next you will have to slide your credit card to get the oxygen mask to fall.” I’m sure whoever coined the phrase about “travel being an adventure” wasn’t talking about air travel in the 21st century! Hope your visit in Seattle was enjoyable.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Well…we have to pay for air for our tires, and who thought we’d ever have to do that. πŸ™‚ There really is nothing enjoyable about air travel except that it is quicker than by car. Seattle was good, but I’m not planning to go anywhere that requires a flight for a while. πŸ™‚


  4. Murphy's Law says:

    Flying doesn’t sound like a fun adventure to me! But it does get you there faster than driving. It was worth it to spend time with your family.

    Enjoy the peace and quiet of your garden as well as the perfect weather we’re having.
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 2 people

  5. For a variety of reasons, I don’t like flying, and this piece did not encourage me to run to the airport to catch a plane. πŸ˜‰ Hope the trip to Seattle was worth the flight.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Grandma Kc says:

    Rich and I travel to Portland once a year and it does amaze me how different things are from the days when I wanted to be a stewardess and couldn’t be because of my vision. Food on the plane is hideously expensive. Gone are the days of a pillow and blanket on long flights. Fortunately on the Portland trip they usually don’t have the screens in the seat backs so at least I can enjoy the scenery.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Joyce says:

    O.M.G. – every word you said and more! But I agree with bikerchick – Chicago O’Hare is a nightmare compared to Boston! Lately, I only fly to DFW on American because they offer a non-stop. I noticed after the new year that you no longer can choose your own seats! That alone made me postpone my annual visit in May to the non-local grandkids. Buying early and choosing an aisle seat was one good comp for dealing with the potential other nightmares you described well enough to give me shivers! – and there’s still 32 days til Halloween!
    Final comment: Just glad you two are safely home with still a nickel jiggling around in your pocket (although if security had detected that, they’d have charged you a “waiting in line fee” to claim it for themselves!
    UGH on everything airlines! I’m too old for it all!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Boston makes sense – different terminals. You arrive where you need to go and can move about. Jet Blue had a full contingency of employees, and they were very willing to help. Seattle has a centralized entry point, and there was one Jet Blue employee with a long line. I used the kiosk and got our boarding passes and luggage tags, but then with only one line we had to get back in the same line to hand off the suitcases. It would have been funny except it wasn’t. πŸ™‚ Then we had take two escalators down to the basement to take the train out to the various terminals and then take two escalators back up to the gate. Yes, we too had aisle seats across from each other. A direct flight and a seat assignment are two things that are really needed to survive air travel these days. Hope you can find a convenient flight for visit those special grands in TX.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Dan Antion says:

    I feel your pain, Judy and I share your complaints. Flying out of Logan is a challenge, but at least you have non-stop options. Flying out of BDL is easy, but you’re always flying to a hub, where you change to a flight to your destination. I tell myself it’s less time stuck in a seat and it gives me a 50/50 shot at decent seatmates. Of course, it adds a couple hours to the trip.

    I like how you handle the parking at the bus lot. Removing the stress points is key to a nice experience.

    I love Seattle. I lived there for a while and I’ve been back several times. I haven’t flown in since they finished the renovations at SeaTac, so I would be the lost little tourist.

    Enjoy the peace and quiet of your garden, as the cool weather starts to roll in.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We use to always fly out of Manchester, but we can’t find a direct flight to anywhere we ever need to go. Portland is small and convenient, but the same issue there – no direct flights. I like your optimism about seat mates. Remember, when you actually spoke to someone sitting next to you and on most flights actually had a nice conversation? Now, almost everyone has earbuds on and no one speaks except to say ‘excuse me’ on the way to the restroom. Hope you’re able to take advantage of the good weather before the rain moves in.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I recently flew to New Orleans and had to have a layover both ways. No non-stop from Reno to NOLA flying on Southwest. I like their boarding procedure. Pick your own seat, but I do pay for early boarding so I’m sure to get some space in the overhead bin. They start a good half hour before the flight leaves to get everyone on board and seated. When changing planes I’m more comfortable having my stuff with me. I’ve learned to pack light.
    We used Uber to get to and from the airport. It was just over $60 each way, but still cheaper than long term parking.

    I always choose the aisle for more legroom and easy access to the bathroom and standing up to walk up the aisle to stretch out without having to wake someone up or crawl over them. To my amazement on both going and coming back one leg of the flight, the middle seat was empty!
    I download my own movies or shows to my Kindle to watch just in case there’s nothing playing I want to watch from their menu. I got caught up on Bosch an Amazon Prime cop series.
    To help avoid getting sick from the coughing, sneezing, always someone going through the airport or plane sick I put Neosporin up my nose before, and during the flight. I swear it keeps me from catching colds and stuff when I fly. I don’t want my trip ruined by getting sick!

    I hope you had a great time in Seatle. It’s been years since I was there.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We did have a good visit. πŸ™‚ I try everything to not have to change planes, hence the bigger airports. But, we have flown Southwest numerous times and paid extra also to board early. Both flights were almost full, and they were begging 20 people each time to check their baggage because the overhead bins would be too full. I LOVE Bosch – good cast, story, and writing. I’ve never tried Neosporin, but I used Cold Bee Gone in my nose and didn’t get sick either. I’ve always experienced sneezing and coughing, but I never had a guy who snorted for five hours to clear his sinuses before, and I hope I never do again. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yuk! That’s so gross! I hope you and I both never experience that again or evah!

        In 1999 I caught pneumonia and didn’t realize that’s what I had but I was so, so sick. Long story… but I was traveling home from taking Big Baby Boy to his first year of university and knew it was bad and needed to go to the hospital. He-Man thought I was being melodramatic and could make it home, but I said, β€œIf I try to get home I will die on the way.”
        This was 3-4 in the morning. He called down to the hotel desk and asked where the nearest hospital was. Luckily for me is nearly next door. They knew straight away I was in bad shape and after sticking that thing on my finger and listening to my lungs they admitted me so fast He-Man’s Head was spinning. I had a bad case pneumonia. I ended up in ICU. When the nurse assigned to me got to my room door she stood there picking her nose… or so I thought. In my delirious state I said, β€œ Didn’t your mom ever teach you that it’s bad manners to pick your nose in public?”

        She laughed so hard! Then came in my room to check me over and said, β€œ I was putting Neosporin up my nose. I do that for every new patient. It keeps me from getting sick and getting new germs.”

        She nursed me through the second most serious Illness in my life to date and I have never forgotten her or what she said about Neosporin. I use it a lot when going to public places since then. Especially airplanes!

        I too love Bosch! Have you wAtched Goliath? It’s good too and the new season starts next week.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m glad you were so close to a hospital because It sounds like you certainly needed medical assistance. I have not watched Goliath, but I will check it out. Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Me too! The Doctor told He-Man if he tried to take me over Donner Pass to get home my lungs would have exploded and I would have died! It was awful. We were in another state and Baby Girl was starting Junior High and if she missed the first day she’d risk losing her class picks. I urged them to go home and get her started in school.
        I was in ICU for 4 days and on the 5th day they released me to go home. I’ve no idea how I got pneumonia I was perfectly fine when we left home to take Big Baby Boy to school 1000 miles from home. I’ve been getting my pneumonia shot since though!

        Goliath you will like I think if you like Bosch. The Protagonist is a lawyer sleuth set in our time dealing with current issues. You have time to catch up on the first two seasons if you have time to do a marathon watch.
        With what you have going on in the garden that might be tough.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Travel by air is definitely best combated with a spot of gardening!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Eliza Waters says:

    Air travel sure isn’t what it used to be, that’s for sure. But to get to the opposite coast, there’s not much choice. Hope your trip was otherwise enjoyable!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Ally Bean says:

    Travel by plane is stressful. No doubt. It’s worth checking bags instead of dragging them around with you. Especially when there are so many people in every airport. [Introvert here.] Enjoy your garden time. You deserve it.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. My wife and I have done a lot of separate travel in the last few years, and she has splurged on mostly first class trips (with the assistance of her American Airlines credit card for points). We’re going to travel together next year to Arizona, and I’m wondering if she’ll just say, “See ya!” after we board and waves as I head to coach. πŸ˜‰ Glad you’re safely back home now. – Marty

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Joanne Sisco says:

    There is absolutely nothing glamorous about flying anywhere. In fact, it’s an outright shoddy experience.

    We’ve all just learned to suck it up. How sad is that? πŸ˜•

    Liked by 2 people

  15. You sound just like me- my friend. If I ever have to go anywhere, ever, with a compartment full of people, it will have to be for a VERY good reason. And then – the first thing I will pack will be my ear plugs.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. germac4 says:

    I agree with all that you say about flying. The planes used for domestic flights here in Australia have absolutely no leg room & if the person in front decides to lower their seat and have a snooze .. you can barely move. We have the same big distances to cover as your have in the US so it has to be done! Enjoy your garden.! 🌷🌷

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Oddment says:

    I like the part about being outside with the pruning shears and shovel for company. That is my idea of a crowd. I rarely travel, and you have described several of the reasons I don’t. I wonder how they’ve come up with so many ways to make people miserable. Very glad you endured!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Once upon a time, I liked traveling. Today? I’ll take the clippers and the trowel, thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  19. I fly a lot around New Zealand for work. The planes are small – today it was a 40 seater – so there is no security. On my flight today – 1 hour and 10 minutes – I got a cup of water, a biscuit (cookie), cup of tea (or coffee) and of course, the option of an Air New Zealand boiled sweet. Of course…if we have to travel out of the country flights are quite a different matter…16 hours from Auckland to Dubai…..

    Liked by 2 people

  20. KerryCan says:

    Flying is a necessary evil, I guess–it does allow us access to wonderful places we’d never see otherwise. Just once, I flew business class, to Scotland–that makes quite the difference in the experience! Enjoy being home, in your own quiet garden . . .

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Annie says:

    The good, the bad, and the ugly of travel. I don’t travel much anymore but when I do, it’s always C&J bus to Logan and I look for JetBlue destinations. (No guarantees about the grace and manners fellow passengers anywhere though.😏) Horrible to boast but the one thing I’ve perfected is packing. All goes under the seat or inside soft luggage that I can force into weird spaces in a tight overhead.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Rose says:

    If it was not 90ΒΊ+ dirt and a shovel sounds wonderful. Supposed to cool down in a couple days, though so maybe I can get outside then. I have only flown to LA and back, and don’t care if I ever do that again. It was not horrible or anything, just nothing fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Nancy says:

    Flying can be a real pain at times! But I d depend on it to get back and forth from our homes. Southwest is always there for us!

    Enjoy your trip! Have fun!

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Getting to the plane can be a real trial. I hate taking off my shoes, belt, etc. to go through security. As for the flight – oy. But it is much quicker.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Karen says:

    Air travel certainly isn’t like it used to be. The closest airport to us if 45 minutes but you can’t get to many places from there. Our other choices are Orlando or Miami…oh how I miss Logan. I’m old enough to remember when you wore a nice outfit on a plane, now the dress code seems to be shorts, flip flops and a hat on backwards. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the chuckle because I certainly remember when you wore a nice outfit as well. Now, it is comfort to the extreme. The two women sitting next to me going out took their shoes off and were barefoot the whole way, and on the way back a man had a pair of white slippers he wore and then just left them on the floor when he put his shoes back on to deplane. That was a new one. πŸ™‚


  26. I hope we get to hear what you did once you made it to Seattle. Air travel can be unpleasant if your fellow passengers aren’t great.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Judy, I feel your pain. It’s like Walmart took to the skies. I remember when PanAM Stewardesses, yes, Stewardesses looked like movie stars. Of course that’s because men made all the hiring decisions. Deregulation and a litigious society changed everything, now, anyone and their Emotional Support Pet can take to the skies. I have not been on a plane that wasn’t completely full in years. In the very near future we will be able to view seat selection and identify where babies are sitting. Wish they would do that for the bookend chubbies also.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. joey says:

    I have not flown on a commercial plane since 1999. I do not look forward to that part of the travel I look forward to. I didn’t hate flying, but it wasn’t my fave, either. It doesn’t seem to have gotten better without me…
    My longest flight was Indy to Oakland and that seemed to take 100 years, but it was only because they had no place to land us for HOURS.
    I loved Seattle, and around Seattle and north of Seattle. I hope you enjoyed it!

    Liked by 1 person

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