Travel OZ


A tear came to my eye. Maybe two. And this was while on my way to Australia, for some fun run in the sun. So what’s up?

It started back at DIA … I arrived in my usual rush, and in the few minutes before the plane was to board, went over to McDonald’s, grabbed a couple of catsup and mustard packets and a plastic spoon, and snorked down some leftover rice I had brought. Hey, those little peanut packets on the plane don’t cut it, and I’m not spending my money on airport food!

Boarding the plane, I instinctively turn right, but the Attendant asks to see my Boarding Pass and directs me left. Left? Oh yeah, I’m flying Business Class this trip. Galen convinced me that Biz Class was worth it; kick in an extra 30,000 Miles (it’s an Award Ticket on UAL), and the 20 hour transit goes much better. OK, I’m getting old, I’ll pop for it.

He was right! A cold glass of champagne, a hot appetizer, and a full meal served on linen with actual silverware made the flight to San Fran go much easier, and the cold rice of a few minutes prior embarrassingly obsolete. Had 3 hours to kill in SF, so chilled out in the Red Carpet Club, with free WiFi and snacks. I’ve been a dirtbag so long it was hard to relax because I expected to get caught and kicked out anytime. When it was time to go, I instinctively began furtively stuffing my pockets with cracker and cookie packets – hey, never know when the next meal is coming right? – but then realized – I don’t have to do this. I’m in Row 2!

ticThis time I boarded way early instead of my usual last possible second – why arrive late to the party? – and proudly turned left. The FA seriously checked my Boarding Pass this time – Biz Class to Australia is 10,000 smackers and my t-shirt didn’t look like a Brooks Brothers suit – but there it was: “Seat 2F”. Turns out there are only 2 seats per row – every seat was a window seat – I could have done vinyasa yoga in the aisle with room to spare. After decades of being a scrapper, living a great life not because I worked particularly hard but because I was adroit at “efficiently utilizing existing resources”, I had scored big time.

“Dude, check it out!”
I wanted to shout to my cabin-mates; time for high-fives all around. But everyone else had a self-contained look like they did this every day – which they probably did – so I quickly ascertained my outburst of enthusiasm would not be met in kind by the CEO of General Tupperware across from me, so I reeled it in. I’ll be really, really happy, but to myself.

So here’s your take-home from this Post: Biz Class is worth it. My Award Ticket cost a total of $112.71 (fees) … heck, I drank that much wine. So if your prize winnings from the last trail race won’t quite cover the $10K, work the Miles, bump from 60,000 to 90,000 … and let me know what you think of the Pinot Gris. I preferred it over the Sauvignon Blanc, but the Aussie Shiraz from Hunter Valley wasn’t half bad either.


* I run in Royal National Park with the founder of Coolrunning Australia
* I’m actually here visiting son Galen and his friend Kristin – we picnic at Outdoor Cinema overlooking Sydney Harbor
* I do the Cradle Mountain Run in Tasmania (unless my knee continues to really hurt, I can’t finish it, and quickly delete this sentence so no one is aware of my dismal failure).


6 Responses to “Travel OZ”

  1. George Z Says:

    Love it. I can see a whole segment of posts on living the high life while actually being a self described long time “dirt bag.” Looking forward to more posts from down under.

  2. JMock Says:

    Humorous read! Have fun.

  3. Nano Says:

    I concur. I tell folks all the time that traveling in the Biz class can’t be beat (except maybe in first) especially on long hauls. You arrive much more refreshed and ready to hit the ground running!
    Have fun over there!

  4. Lori B Says:

    That was a really fun read dad. Did G ever tell you about the time he gave me his first class seat and I was so nervous I turned down the free wine and opted for a bottle water? I didn’t want to appear too excited so I acted like I did it all the time by opting out of the amenities. How crazy is that?

  5. Buzz Says:

    Wait till I tell you about the Air New Zealand lounge in Auckland … hot b’fast, lunch, or dinner bar, wine and beer bar, hot showers … and massage! All comp! I’m considering dropping all my running plans and hanging in the lounge for the entire trip …

  6. Sara M Says:

    I’ve read this a few times now, and it just keeps getting funnier!!

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