Thursday, October 15, 2009

When they use the word Elegante'

Right now I am sitting in hotel suite at the MCM Elegante in Abilene, TX. Never been to this hotel before. Why I am here will be covered in a blog over at my pilot blog.

When a business uses the word Elegante in the title, it's usually to cover up how crappy it really is. This reminds me of the "Royal with Cheese" from Pulp Fiction....really just a Quarter Pounder.

This hotel is really just a decent OLD hotel. The only Elegante parts are two 32 inch LCDs and truly awesome beds. The rooms, furniture, decor and elevators are all 80's vintage. The breakfast this morning was full of salty/fatty items. I had to get eggs made fresh as the ones in the buffet were pre-salted. I then grabbed a single serving of Cinnamon Toast Crunch and coffee. Everything else looked decent (sausage patties, bacon, biscuits, and such).

I am missing the DFW Airport Lost and Found sale this morning. Kinda bummed about it. Oh well...maybe next time.

I'm going to spend Tuesday planning Tokyo. I hope to head to Houston to visit my dad Wednesday or Thursday. Rental cars are crazy expensive in Houston right now. Lowest I could find for a day was $65 all in. I used to get $23 all in.

Thinking about getting a Kindle for Christmas. I think if we put them both on the same account we can trade books back and forth.....not that I see that happening though. Over the last 7 1/2 years I think we shared one book.....which happens to be travel related.

Don't think I posted this earlier in the week. The NY Times posted an article about a pilot for Expressjet Airlines (they fly for Continental Express) who went from First Officer making crap money, to Captain and back to First Officer. The article goes deep and looks at how it has affected his family.

Here is an excerpt that hit me.

They closed on the house in August 2008, on the eve of the downgrade, and soon there were regrets. “We would not have bought the house on a first officer’s salary,” Tracy Lawlor said. She had considered giving up teaching to be a stay-at-home mom. “We felt we had some breathing room for the first time in our 11 years of marriage,” she said, “and that went out the window with the downgrade.”

She was sitting at her kitchen table, and her husband, across from her, winced, but did not disagree. Even if his captain’s rank and pay are restored she will continue to teach, she said. His pay could be cut again. They are convinced of that and, in preparation, they made certain there would be no more children. Their fourth, Jackson, was just 4 months old when the downgrade came, and soon after, Mr. Lawlor underwent a vasectomy.

“We could not take the risk of having another child,” he said.

Silver, and Dark, Linings

The West Coast assignment, while representing a promotion, meant long, often overnight commutes, with Mr. Lawlor sleeping fitfully in the jump seat of a FedExcargo jet or in a sleeping bag rolled out in the cargo area. His first day home, he often spent dozing on the living room couch. His wife hated the time taken from the family, and her husband’s exhaustion.

“He was totally worn out the first day back, and tired the whole time he was home,” she said.

One year later, even after such a big pay cut, Mrs. Lawlor sees her husband’s shorter commute to his new base at Newark as a blessing she is reluctant to give up. Her husband says that moving back up to captain, with a captain’s pay, might mean commuting again to California. “If that is what it takes, I’ll do it,” he said, and this time his wife winced.

“I would probably not be happy,” she said. But she “wouldn’t trade him for another husband,” as she put it, and while she had never wanted her husband to be a pilot, at this point she would be alarmed if he left aviation in an attempt to please her.

“He likes what he does,” she said, “whereas before he did not like what he did. That has made him easier to be around, whereas before he became a pilot, he wasn’t happy at all.”

Full article by clicking here

Right now Kelli and I "live" on her salary. Once my flight loan is paid off we plan on continuing to do so, using my pay for savings and such. We live a very comfortable lifestyle. Having an offspring will likely reduce us to just comfortable. By getting used to living on just her salary, if I ever lose my job we should be okay. By using my pay for savings, if she ever loses her job we will be decent to comfortable.

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