7.01 pm We have landed at Chicago, in from Pittsburgh. The snow in Chicago has started falling. I can see that, don’t need the iPhone weather app to tell me that! But what is the temperature? If it’s not too cold, the snow will melt quickly and not be a big problem for the runway and the aircraft. Well, it is 34 °F. Better get out of here before it drops to 30 °F in the next hour or so, though.
7.14 pm We’re still on the tarmac, waiting for the plane at gate B5 to get de-iced so that it can move and allow us to pull up. Hmm. Let me check with United’s app if my flight to Seattle is still scheduled for an on-time departure. Yes. I can even see where the incoming plane is from (Washington, DC). It has almost arrived and is scheduled to arrive 9 minutes early, in fact.
8.06 pm We have gotten to gate B5. I just have to walk over to gate B10 for the Seattle flight. Almost time to board. If I’m lucky I will get upgraded to the big seats in first class. Have I been? Yes! .. the upgrade list that used to be classified information available only the sometimes-surly ground personnel, is now available to everyone (to obsessively check every 3 minutes if you feel you have to?). That’s me in seat 3E on the Upgrade List. (Later, before we departed, the guy across the aisle in 3B made a fuss when he discovered his seat’s overhead light was not working. ‘I need it to read, my Kindle is not backlit!’, he complained to the stewardess. I knew exactly what was going to happen next : ‘Will I be so kind to consider trading seats with him?’ she asked. ‘Alright, then’ I said (thinking : Good Grief, the way that guy is carrying on, they’re going to hold the @#$% flight to call Maintenance to get it fixed. Can’t let that happen).
8.45 pm We’re getting pushed back from the gate. Four hours to Seattle, and 1,720 miles for an 11 pm Pacific Time arrival, two time zones away from Chicago’s Central Time.
And what is the weather like in Seattle? I forgot to check before we left in Chicago. This flight does not have in-flight internet, so I will have to wait until we land to know – which was perfectly OK. It was great to be headed home to the Pacific Northwest, far, far away from the Northeast which was about to be pummeled with the blizzard of the century.