Sunday, May 10, 2009

$100 Steak The Big Texan

I am in Amarillo. The plan was for me to fly the flight here and have Kelli in the back as a passenger. I haven't flown a flight with her on board. At the last minute the flight downgraded to a smaller plane which I don't fly. Oh well. Kelli and I both rode in the back as passengers.

After we arrived Kelli got the rental car while I got my bags. We made our way to The Big Texan Steakhouse. The Big Texan is known for their "Eat a 72 oz steak and the dinner is free". We wouldn't be doing that.

We forgot today is Mother Day. The restaurant was packed! We walked around the gift shop and the waiting area. They had slot machines for play! They were play only...couldn't win any real  money. I didn't play.

After being seated we chose to go for the Mothers Day buffet. The buffet was $7 for Mothers...$15 for everyone else. Kelli is an honest person. The waitress asked if she was a mother, Kelli said "I could be". Hmm...

We ate a lot of food. A lot of food. The bill came...both full price. The reason I titled this blog "$100 Steak lunch is related to the term "$100 Hamburger". This is basically flying out to a city just for lunch. Kelli and I had $100 BBQ two years ago. Nice. On the way out the Richmond gene kicked in and Kelli bought some homemade fudge.

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The candy area had these really pretty bubblegum candy thingies. Be a shame to actually eat one.

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Big Tex has a fleet of limos offering free pickup in the area....not sure about return service though. In true Texas style they all have horns on the front.

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The hotel I was staying at was just down the street. She had a few hours before her flight. We hung out for a bit and she made her way back to the airport. Since I work for the airline I told her the inbound plane was delayed. At the time it was only 30 minutes or so late.

After she arrived she sent me a text. The plane was still in Dallas with mechanical problems! Nice. Eventually the plane left Dallas.

Kelli then sent me a text that police were standing by to meet the plane. Turns out a passenger assaulted a Flight Attendant. I know one of the Flight Attendants very well as I flew a whole month with him. I know the Captain very well also.

The plane arrived. The passenger (an old man) was escorted off. The plane ended up leaving an hour and a half late. Kelli has bad luck when she tags along with me on my trips.

She came along with me for the first time a few months ago when I went to Shreveport. The overnight then was 18 hours long on a Sunday. Shreveport has  a casino. We love to gamble. We rented a car and had a great time gambling. I would be flying the first flight out the next day. Before we left to go to Shreveport, the return flight to Dallas had 40+ open seats. When we got back to the hotel after gambling the flight was full. A flight had canceled that night and all the passengers rolled over to the morning. I tried to reassure Kelli that the first flight of the day is the most missed flight as passengers sleep in/decide to take a later flight/just don't show up.

In the morning we drove to the airport and dropped off the rental car. The rest of the crew was taking the hotel van. The ground crew were a little confused seeing me arrive by myself.  I prepped the plane for the return flight before the crew arrived. The plane sat right in front of the departure gate and I could see my wife from the cockpit. She sent me a text that ALL the passengers showed up and she wouldn't be getting on. Feeling bad for my wife I went up to the gate and gave  her my laptop bag. The passengers gave us an odd look. Here was this pilot giving his laptop bag to some passenger? Yeah. Kelli then sat in the airport for 12 HOURS missing 7 other flights! A flight attendant who was commuting to work (and also getting bumped off flights) saw Kelli sitting there and asked if she worked for the airline. After a few minutes the flight attendant realized she knew ME and told Kelli that if she didn't get on a flight she could stay the night at her house. Airline people take care of each other. Thankfully they got on a flight home.

Kelli is on her way home now. Not sure if she will ever come to an overnight with me again.

This trip has been fun. I made two butter smooth landings today. They were kind of exciting. With low clouds I didn't see the runway until 10 seconds prior to landing. Fun! The Captain I am flying with is 61. He needs to retire. Getting on there with his memory.

Tomorrow I have three flights before being off for 2 days. I am still planning on going to Vegas for the day Wednesday.

My mother in law comes in town next week.

In my plane I carry pets in the cargo area often. There is a switch that must be turned on for them to survive. If I don’t turn it on….whatever pets we have in the back will likely freeze to death. As part of our checklist we always turn it on after takeoff. What the switch does is allow conditioned cabin air (after it’s been passed through all the smells associated with the cabin) to enter the cargo compartment. During the summer I will turn the switch on before we leave the gate to keep the pets at a comfortable temperature. Anyway here is a picture of the “dead puppy switch”.

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I have yet to kill I pet....I always check!

Time for the Amazing Race finale.

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