Getting to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Today has been a long travel day. Jim went to bed at 7:00 PM Monday night (March 25) and took a sleeping pill to ensure that he would get some rest. He was dead to the world. I followed at 8:00 PM and slept fitfully, thinking about what I forgot to pack. Only missed a hairbrush, I think. 

The 12:30 AM alarm came very quickly, it seemed. However, we were organized and were ready for our pickup to the airport. We were picked up by our faithful driver at 1:30 AM. At least no traffic. Many of you know that as Permanent Residents of Mexico, we must complete a firm and get it stamped at the Aduana office. Having arrived at 2:00 AM, it should not have been a problem to get the stamp and then get in the usual long line to drop off our bags. Well… the office doesn’t open until 3:00 AM, so we just had to stand around waiting.

Once stamped, we hustled to the airline desk, with probably 100 people waiting to check in for flights and only three check-in attendants. The young Mexican man in front of us was equally dismayed. He goes to LA often and has an amazing business in construction and event planning for huge events, like rock concerts. He sees this situation often and we both lamented that even with two hours prior to flight time, we still may not make it. Fortunately, more attendants came and those going to LA were moved to an expedited line. So far, so good…

The flight to LAX was uneventful. The layover wasn’t too long, with our flight leaving on the very long leg of the trip at 12:30 PM Pacific DST. We had to wend our way through Business Class to get to Economy seating, just to show us what we were missing. It is similar to airports that make you walk through the stores prior to boarding so you will be tempted to buy something. Next time Business Class??

The many children on board were distracted by the movies and games available or they just slept. We were very fortunate, as were their parents. The food was more than acceptable and the staff very helpful.

Best of all, we had a lovely seat mate who goes to Manila on this airline and offered to take us to the China Eastern Lounge for our layover. A shower, a rest and off we go for the final flight to Vietnam. A little over an hour to go!

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