Europe 2017

Thursday August 10, 2017
Kayak Venice

Friday August 11, 2017
Venice to El Granada

Kent was the first to fly home, his flight out of Geneva for Lisbon left shortly after 7am
Paul left the hotel very early for his 1105am flight from Venice to Atlanta.  He ran into plenty of long security lines.
Ray's flight left Rome at 1115am for Charlotte.
Kent ran into massive security line in Lisbon. People were yelling at line cutters.
My flight to Frankfurt didn't leave until 245pm, so I had plenty of time to see a few sites in Venice before heading to the airport.
The best part?  I was supposed to get home before everyone else since I only had one short layover.

The massive line outside Basilica San Marco.

Apparently San Marco Basilica and the Sistine Chappel are the only two places left in Europe that won't let you take any pictures.
I ignored that rule cause dumb rules suck.

2017-08-11 10:11

Golden Altarpiece of Basilica San Marco

Basilica San Marco

2000 year old Bronze horses

2000 year old Bronze horses

Long line to check in for Lufthansa in Venice.

2017-08-11 16:30

My last United 747 flight from Frankfurt to SFO
I was really looking forward to flying a 747 one last time.
I'd come prepared, I loaded movied on my iPhone since I knew there wouldn't be much if any inflight entertainment (IFE)
I also made sure to load the United app so I could watch watch the crappy old IFE system if it worked at all.

After boarding, our flight was delayed because 5 out of 14 toilets - all of them on one side of the plane - were broken. 
At only 15m late they started handing out snacks and water, that was not a good sign.
After an hour maintenance gave up trying to fix them.
We took off about 70 minutes late.

The power under my seat didn't work.
The power under the seat next to me worked, but the charger fell out constantly because the plug was 30 years old and too loose.
My headrest didn't work, it fell down anytime I tried to adjust it.
The IFE system said my iPhone app wasn't up to date.
It was, the IFE system was just trash, clearly nobody on this flight could use it.
I pointed all this out to the flight attendent, they couldn't realky fix anything.

The movie they were playing on the big screens skipped so much it wasn't watchable but I didn't bother pointing that out.

They ran out of ice cream before they got to us because we were at the back of the plane... not cool!

2017-08-11 20:04

When I opened the butter for my roll, it sprayed hot melted butter all over my plate and iPhone.
I rang the FA to express my dismay and request some napkins to clean it up.
The FA took this very seriously, he said they have procedures to make sure something like this never happens (procedure: don't be an idiot and try to heat the butter packet)
He said United would make sure my iPhone was ok
Later he came over and told me I'd been given 3750 miles for my troubles, worth about $56 according to most people (United probably figures they're worth $75 or $0.02 / mile)
It was certainly nice he could do something on the spot.
I later pushed the matter of the 'your entire plane was broken' experience with United customer service and after a few weeks and a little back and forth got a $150 gift certificate that I've already used.

I arrived in SFO 45m late, around 8pm
Kent landed SLC 1222am MDT
Ray arrived PHX at same time only with one hour time different 1123pm MST

Turns out Kent's bag never made it out of Lisbon.
They delivered Kent's bag at 2:35am Sunday morning, 26 hours after he got home.
He was very happy to get his $3000 worth of climbing gear back...

All four of us had simply amazing trips...

I biked up Col du Galibier, Furkapass, and Oberalppass, solo climbed Breithorn and had an adventure on Allalinhorn
Kent summitted 2 new 4000m peaks Nadelhorn & Allalinhorn, repeated Breithorn to do it with me, and had adventures on Dom, the Monch, and Lagginhorn.
Ray rode over 1000km on his rented BMW
Paul, Ray and I kayaked in Venice

Thursday August 10, 2017
Kayak Venice

Friday August 11, 2017
Venice to El Granada