Sunday, November 26, 2023

November 5, 2023 – San Pedro, CA – Heavy Fog – 60s

We are back from our double Mexico cruise combo.  It is so foggy outside that I couldn’t see the pier from our porthole.  

Up in the Oceanview Café, the ship was totally blanketed by dense fog – couldn’t see the pier or other ships that were there.  I don’t know how the ship navigated through the soup.  I had my usual breakfast – an appropriate farewell.  Even though it was disembarkation day, I brought Ellen her usual meal. 

Nancy told us that she was in no hurry to get to our room so we stayed in there until 8:45 PM – our group is scheduled to depart at 9:00 AM.  We had a few pesos left and Nancy gave them to Nancy along with an additional tip.

We hung out on Deck 5 and our number was called right on time.  We scanned out and made our way to the Terminal.  The World Cruise Terminal used facial recognition in Immigration and we both passed through the scanners with no issue – very fast and efficient. 

We found our luggage pretty quickly and our bus to LAX quickly as well.  The bus waited a while before departing to LAX.  The ride took about 25 minutes – traffic was light – and Southwest is the first stop for this bus.  We tried to check our bags but the kiosk said it was too early to check bags and we would have to wait until four hours pre-flight.  That would mean about an hour as our flight was departing at 3:10 PM.  There are no real seating areas pre-security in this terminal so we wound up in an area for handicapped individuals – it was like a corral for passengers.  There were seats for us so we were not taking any seats from someone with issues. 

Right at 11:10 AM, I checked us in at the kiosk and printed out our luggage tags.  The bags would be checked through to Chicago.  We went to TSA Pre-Check and I was randomly picked to go through the scanner.  I did that successfully and we headed to our gate, which was the last one in the concourse.  We wound up sitting a few gates away where it was less crowded, quieter, and had working chargers. 

We shared an airport Diet Coke ($4.50 or so) and had the sandwiches we made from stuff from the ship’s buffet along with Pirate Booty from the hotel.  It made for a very tasty lunch. 

Flight 278 – a 737 Max 9 – was at the gate at boarding time.

Not a big fan of the Southwest “no assigned seats” process and even though I tried to check in on the microsecond, I still wound up in with C2 and Ellen had B35.  She boarded before me and got us seats in the way back of the plane – window and middle (the aisles go right away).  That would be fine.  We already have B group numbers for the connecting flight so maybe we’ll do better.

The flight was very bumpy especially on approach to DEN, when the plane got wacked sideways, which in my opinion was the strongest turbulence I can recall.  The plane managed through it and we wound up just a few gates away from our connecting flight which was already lining up.  This plane was a 737-800.

We wound up getting window and aisle bulkhead on the port side because the woman who started to take the seats opted not to.  It might have been that the guy in the aisle looked like he might cross over into the middle seat airspace (which he did).  In any event, we had lots of legroom even though I had to scooch closer to the window seat to avoid being used as an armrest. 

This flight was also bumpy but we got to Chicago on time.  We got our bags and I texted American Taxi that we had arrived.  My pre-arranged cab came a few minutes later and soon we were back in our condo.

An interest pair of voyages combined with an interesting flight home.

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