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Trip Notes, Newark-Oslo-Amsterdam

I’ve got a work trip to Europe this week (Amsterdam, via Oslo on an SAS A330 in Business, then a day in Istanbul and back to New York on SAS via Oslo). A few quick notes:

- Got on the plane, popped the Ambien, and I stayed awake for a bit. I saw the flight attendants heading down the aisle with linens so they could make up our trays for dinner. I was prepared to eat when I suddenly woke up 5 ½ hours later. Hm, that was odd. I can picture the guy walking toward me with the tablecloth, but I don’t actually remember eating any food. I know I was going to ask for the fast version of dinner (Seat 5G on SAS is not exactly Nobu), but I’m not sure I actually received the food. I think I fell asleep as they were making up my traytable. Disturbing.

- I could probably sleep for 5 hours standing up after I take Ambien (or the faux Ambien I procured at Managua’s airport and which I used last night. I work out, eat well, never smoked. But I’m willing to put off-brand Nicaraguan drugs in my body while 5 miles above the earth. Perhaps I should re-consider.) And though I did sleep, whoever designed those angled lie-flat beds is quite the joker. I managed to have both my arms and my legs fall asleep (the tingly “fall asleep” not the “dreamy fall asleep”) while my body slid down toward the floor and my legs got all scrunched up. Each time I’d try to re-adjust, there’d be a rush of blood to that spot, alternatingly making me dizzy or light headed. Those seats are so close to being fantastic. So close.

- After landing in Oslo, I headed to the SAS lounge to try to grab bread/jam/cheese/smoked salmon (I’m guessing that’s what they have), but my continuing flight to Amsterdam is on KLM. I wasn’t allowed in the SAS lounge, which confused me, as I thought you could go into the lounge on arrival and shower (perhaps it’s not an arrivals lounge?) They also wouldn’t let me in with my Continental President’s Club card, so I sauntered over to the KLM lounge, which, if Oslo’s airport lodges were the Kardashian sisters, would be Khloe to SAS’s Kim.

- It is worth noting here that international premium cabin airfares are an extremely confusing situation. To wit: A roundtrip ticket on SAS from Newark to Oslo in business class cost roughly $9,000, or roughly the cost of one round of in-vitro fertility treatment, not that I’d know anything about that, oh right yes I would. Where was I? Oh right, Oslo. I bought a ticket from Newark to Amsterdam via Oslo, and then returning from Oslo (no AMS-OSL leg). That ticket cost roughly 1/3 the price of a Newark-Oslo roundtrip. Why? I have no idea. I’m sure there’s some reason. I don’t know what that reason is. But I do know that I saved $6,000 by adding a short leg to my trip.

- I’m in the quasi EuroBusiness section on a KLM 737 heading to Amsterdam. Intra-Europe business typically is just coach with the middle seat blocked out, and this is no different. However, after departure, the 4 of us in EuroBusiness (or whatever they call this section) were offered not a hot towel, but a towel from a Kleenex box labeled “Delicious Scent.” Pizza is a delicious scent, but that’s not what they meant. Now 4 men in rows 1 and 2 smell like lavender fabric softener.

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  1. I never use LOL (and hate when other people do) but I have to tell you my wife and I both laughed out loud several times while reading this post. Even if we don’t know which Kardashian is which (or why they’re even famous.) Hope the “Delicious Scent” of lavender has worn off by now. Thanks for the great post.

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