Tanzania, Africa travel journal – day 1

categories: Travel

Eight of our group met at church and carpooled up to San Francisco. We met Carol and Jack at the airport, the missing two members of the group. There was quite a long line of travelers checking in for the British Air flight to London (about a full 747 number of people).

One thing that happened at check-in that went unnoticed at the time was that 4 of the group had their luggage checked all the way through to the Kilimanjaro airport while the rest of the group was told they would have to pick up their bags in Nairobi, Kenya and check it in again manually. At least one member in the group had their luggage re-booked from Kilimanjaro to Nairobi when another staff member specifically said that sending it directly was not possible. But, as we did not check-in as a group we had different conversations with different agents, got different information and were scattered around the plane.

Most of the group grabbed something to eat at the Firewood Cafe restaurant and split meals so as to have enough to eat to not starve before a meal on the plane at about 8pm. I Split a burger and a salad with Susan and Mary. It was actually pretty tasty. Airport meals have come a long way.

On the plane I sat next to Rick in the emergency row, which had 4-5 feet of leg room in front of the seat but obviously no place to store a carry on. I grabbed a 15 minute nap before dinner was served and slept for at least 6 hours (on a 10 hour flight) on the whole flight. We learned what “flight attendants cross check your doors” means. As they disarmed the doors they visually checked the door across the plane. They had a nice setup on the bulkhead for setting up a child’s baby seat for the family next to us. Rick and I were sitting across from one of the jump seats and chatted a little with the flight attendant on take off and landing, but she was not particularly chatty. We did learn that she was from Birmingham in England (2.5 hours from London). Rick may have managed to sleep 5 minutes on that leg of the journey. We all had private video screens so awake time was spent watching movies (Bourne Identity 2 and Oceans 11). The meal was fine but my chicken with rice looked surprisingly like the lasagna.

by Chris Christensen

I am the creator of AmateurTraveler.com, a popular travel blog / podcast. I am also a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast, The Bible Study Podcast and the Passport Marketing and PR Podcast. I am the owner of BloggerBridge.com and a software consultant.



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