Been sort of a strange day as any day when one leaves on a long trip. As I write this, I am on AA flight 707 STL to LAX. I started today trying to get airline reservations for next Summer for our family trip to Israel. Obviously, I wanted to use points. I found out I have to wait until 331 days before the return flights to make a round trip reservation. So, I calculated when that would be. Next I set up credit card payments for while I am away. Light lunch and mostly then sat around until it was time for Marian to take me to the airport.

Checked my bag, went through TSA PreCheck, found out that AA’s Admiral Club does not honor first class tix unless it’s an international flight. No biggie. Sat in terminal for about an hour. Plane left about 25 minutes late due to thunderstorms in the area. The first class section is all of two rows, total of eight seats. Across the aisle from me is a young woman with a seal gray cat on her lap. Next to me is a businesswoman in her business suit returning home to LA. I believe she is French given her accent. We talked photography and food. Speaking of food, I decided that dinner in LA was far enough in the future of partake of the vittles offered. Passing over mountains with snow on them now. Not really sure where we are, but it’s pretty in the afternoon sun. And now desert – flat as can be, dry washes. Not a road in sight nor any dwellings. Map says we’re about an hour and 20 minutes from LAX. 

Sitting here with nothing better to do, I kept trying to figure out LA time vs. NZ. If it’s a 17-hour difference STL to NZ, I finally realized it’s a 19-hour difference from LA instead of what I had stuck in my mind as 15 hours. Ah, it all makes sense.

Got in pretty much on time. Got luggage and went on shuttle to Hampton Inn El Segundo. Jill came by around 7:45 and we went to M B Post in Manhattan Beach for a great dinner. Good small plates, expensive wine, but it all comes out in a reasonable total. And loud. Hard to hear each other. Loved being with Jill. Lots to catch up on.

Back to Hampton Inn El Segundo to watch the news of the day – shootings and obstruction of justice allegations. Glad to be leaving the US right about now.

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