I’m writing this while flying over Colorado. We’re at 37,000 feet.
On my way west, we were averaging a bit under 400 mph. With the wind at our back, Flight 265 is doing 570 mph! The pilot says we’ll be 20 minutes early to Midway.
Back at LAX, the gate agent called “boarding in five minutes.” I shut down my laptop and began to pack. My laptop had other ideas.
Without warning I was installing update 1 of 6!
Please, don’t turn me off until I’m done, my laptop screamed in big letters from a font I’d not chosen. No one asked me. If they had, I’d have said “later.”
I semi-closed the lid, slipping my finger between the keyboard and screen to keep any switches from killing the power. That’s the way I boarded the plane. Helaine and Stef, reading this, are glad they weren’t around. Another embarrassing Geeky Greg moment.
This flight is around half full. My rowmate, A middle-aged woman, is dozing in the aisle seat. I’m at the window. I chose the right side to see any prettiness associated with the sunset, which should soon be happening.
Our country is beautiful from this altitude. Yes, the sophisticated traveler takes the aisle seat to have easier bathroom access. He’s too cool to look out the window. I need the scenery.
We took off from Los Angeles and headed out to sea. After a few miles we turned north, paralleling the Pacific Coast toward Malibu. There was fog this morning. It covered the ocean near the shoreline, penetrating inland to the first foothills. Things must be slow on the PCH today.
Inland, a layer of haze made the ground a little less distinct. I could also use the “S” word – smog. There’s some of that too.
Already above 10,000 feet, we made a sweeping left 270 degree turn, finally heading east. A few minutes later I started seeing snow capped mountains. They weren’t far from LA.
Nearly all that’s between Los Angeles and Las Vegas is desolate. Sometimes you’ll pick out a road etched into the vast expanse of dirt. Cryptically, every once in a while a geometric pattern shows up. Are they housing tracts, surveyed but never developed? Way out in the desert, it’s easy to wonder why this land would be considered for anything.
I saw Lake Mead, but not nearby Las Vegas. The Grand Canyon appeared out my window, just a bit south of us. A few minutes later, I saw the bane of my last trip west. It was the gigantic Navajo Power Plant near Page, AZ. Close by was the Glenn Canyon Dam. Have I really been here enough times to start picking out landmarks from above?
I shot a few photos of Monument Valley, looking south from the Utah side. The plane wouldn’t be there long. We were heading toward Colorado.
There is plenty of snow out here. Originally, I thought what I saw was a light patch. Then I realized the trees and bushes poking through the snow was why it never looked solidly white. The slopes of the Western Rockies looked like chocolate cake with powdered sugar sprinkled on.
Below me now, the mountains have disappeared. It’s Kansas. It’s flat. As far as the eye can see, there are rectangular fields. Sometimes the fields are interrupted by perfectly round patches where an irrigation system rotating on wheels or tracks has made its presence known.
I’m not sure where the water comes from. So far, the vast majority of river beds I’ve seen have been dry.
I’m tired. I’ll be exhausted by Hartford. I’ll need the rest of the weekend to recuperate from my vacation.
Blogger’s addendum: When first published, this entry was full of typos and poorly formed English. That’s what happens when you write against time, trying to finish before the battery gives out. Writing offline without a spell checker didn’t help either! It’s mostly fixed now