Dave Duncan

"Eat Well, Stay Fit, Die Anyway"

“In the Unlikely Event of a Water Landing…”

Since we’re still going through our photos from the trip, today I’ll focus on the time actually spent travelling.

Our direct flight from Toronto to Munich was just over eight hours, while our return trip was just over nine.  I can only assume the slight difference has something to do with tradewinds since it can’t be more downhill one way or the other.

After years of driving long distances to the cottage, I’ve inadvertently trained myself to stay awake while in a moving vehicle, so red-eye flights are something of a nightmare for me.  Passing the time for eight or nine hours in a flying aluminum can filled with flatulence-tainted air and the occasional wail of a child can be a pretty Herculean task, more so when you just can’t sleep.

Air Canada to the rescue!  Even in their cheap steerage seats, each person has a touchsreen television in front of them with free on-demand access to a suprisingly large quantity and variety of films and TV shows.  There were Hollywood hits, classics, art films, foreign films and avant-garde arty ones too.  TV choices were fantastic too.  Comedy, HBO hits, drama, news…  the selection was actually better than I have on basic Digital Cable here at home.

I got caught up on some episodes of the US version of “The Office” and the “The Flight of the Conchords” and saw a few movies I’d missed in theatres, like “Adventureland“, “I Love You, Man” and “Grand Torino“.  I even watched one movie I never would have thought of watching, even if it was on TV, “Ice Age 2” (don’t bother).

Each bank of two seats also shared an outlet (which could convert for either North America or Europe) and a powered USB input, so I could’ve watched all three seasons of my beloved “The IT Crowd” on my iPod without fear of draining my battery, or anything on my laptop had I brought it.  We live in truly magical times.

One thing that still hasn’t changed is the quality of airline food, and Air Canada’s standard meals are still pretty lacklustre.  However, on our return flight, we were given a hot snack from the UK which is sort of like a McDonald’s apple pie, but filled with lamb meat stew.  Kudos to Monty’s Bakehouse for a delicious treat, and hopefully they’re available in Canadian grocery stores soon, or maybe even at TFC games!

Our actual flights were pretty uneventful, for the most part. A little light turbulence here and there at cruising altitude, but on our descent into Toronto, we were bouncing and weaving so badly, I actually found myself wondering if we would touch a wing or the tail to the ground before the wheels hit, but the actual landing was smooth as glass.

For me, the actual trip overseas is my greatest barrier to travelling more, and it’s not that I dislike flying; I actually love the feeling of being in a plane.  For me, it’s the discomfort of travel and the sheer, sleepless boredom of a transatlantic flight.  Well, I’m now halfway to enjoying flying more so maybe it’s time to upgrade to Business Class to improve the comfort portion.  All I need to do is win this week’s $32 million 6/49 draw.

1 comment

1 Comment so far

  1. Jared July 15th, 2009 1:00 pm

    That Air Canada in flight entertainment thing is pretty sweet. Unfortunately, when you’re on short domestic flights, there isn’t enough time to watch a movie. Flights from Toronto to Winnipeg are about 15 minutes too short to watch a full length movie and most of those movies aren’t out on DVD. I had to wait 3 months to find out how a couple films ended.

Leave a reply