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View Full Version : Flight with Nature-AA, and meeting Mario!



Alex T
07-11-2007, 12:02 AM
July 10th, 2007.
American Airlines
STL-DFW
MD-80
N973TW

I parked my car at the employee lot for Southwest at the E terminal in STL. I ran into a co worker and we walked to the E terminal together where she would go on to work and I would continue my walk to the Main Terminal using the Metro. I got on the Metro, rode it to the Main T, then got out of it, with a huge downpour that lasted the walk from the Train to the building... Angry ..Of course! I walked to one of the Self Check in Machine's, it spitted out my boarding pass, and I went off to security.

Security was very easy and fast. I flipped my badge out with my boarding pass and headed through. I walked to the B concourse to check out the new Air Tran Flights. One was boarding for ATL continuing on to JAX. New Color 717 as well. Very weird to see a jetbridge at B again, let alone a new LCC-FL. I walked back to C on the way and my phone had rang. It was My Father. I answered and he goes "Where you flying off to now?" There was silence...and I replied "Ok..How did you know I was flying somewhere?" He replied "Because your my son, and I know you love to fly on your days off, which I knew it was your day off..where you going?" Me "Dang....DFW..... Silly" He goes "have a safe trip...bye!" I said Bye, and hung up..Its scary how much parents know about you!!

I walked back to the Main Terminal, and for a Tuesday it was very busy. Not packed but busy, a few flights were overselling, mostly DFW ones. It seemed nearly every flight to DFW was booked full or overselling. Not to bad for AA....I thought the Wright Amendment was supposed to hurt them? Wink

I decided to watch the boarding proccess, and ya it was a mess. Everyone was everywhere, No Line, had folks standing around the gate area asking for their assigned seats, when they announced boarding everyone stood up..it was a mess, very uhm..cattle call like? But...But...this is AA, not Southwest! HEAVEN FORBID! Now, go easy on me, I sure may be biased by WN, thats your opinion but I do tell it like it is....and this was pretty awful.

Then, WTF is with the Red Phones? I am sorry thats just "rude". No live agent to speak to? Pick up the phone, call and an agent will speak to you. Is AA agents afraid to speak to them in person? Oh dear....

I had a couple of Pax's get mad on the phone and one slammed it down frusterated he couldn't just speak to someone in person. One agent simply said "go to the red phone and they will help you".....

Wow....

I walked around and observed how the AA CSA acted around their customers. Yes, I admit I was comparing, because I know how I act when I am on the job and I was curious to see if it really is easy to ready body language as I have been preached about. They did pretty good, did good to smile, were happy, cheerful, and one could think you would be able to be comfortable with them, CLEARLY not the case at DFW though which I will bring up later.

The MD80 arrived from LAX, at 2:55pm. Everyone got off and they started our own boarding. Everyone crowded around, big surprise..and agents kept telling people go back to the line, this is not your group number etc etc. My group was called, Group 4, and I boarded with the rest of them. I went to my row, 18A, and sat down. Ahh....the MD80 Smile

I was sitting in front of the wing, so I knew I was going to get a crick from staring out the window the whole flight haha.

I was in the 2x2 side, cloth seat. My perfect seat would be AA's 2x2 seating, with WN's leather seat and seat pitch, oh wait..did I just describe YX? Hmmh.. Silly I should try them out!

They completed the boarding by 3:35pm. We backed out and the F/A did their announcements. I am so used to the 737 safety briefing, its so weird to here it differently for the MD80. We taxied to R30L, sat and waited 15 min then we took off.

I was shocked by how quiet the MD80 is upfront, it never ceases to amaze me. All that was heard was the roaring of the wind slipping by the body of the 80, the bumps of the wheels going over the cracks on the runway and the rumble of the engine far back behind me. But, its what I call the sound of Flight! And THAT my friend is truly what flying is all about to me, hearing what makes us fly.

We turned left and headed north..no im kidding we went south to Hell...or otherwise known as DFW, joking Wink I have not been to DFW in over a year so I was anxious to see the new D terminal and what it had to offer. Service started 35 min after take off, thats normally fine but im used to WN's 15 min service and that was slow on AA compared....

Service though, actual part was done fast in about 20 minutes for a full MD80 which is not bad in my eyes. I ordered a coke, which should not be a surprise to any of you all whom know me, and was nice to get the full can without having to ask like I do on WN. Also i noticed a bigger cup, drink cup that is...not the other cup size Wink That was easier to drink out of the bigger cup but F/A please EASY ON THE ICE!

It was a bit turbulent, but it served to be a smooth ride, or flight I should say It was also very cool to see the new cloud formations, one of the beauty of nature. Those formations. I read the American Way Magazine to pass the time, reading about Robin Williams. Funny chap I should say.

Pretty soon it was time to descent into DFW. We turned left and seemed to merge with another MD80 who was flying right beside us and beat us to the runway before we did. We seemed to glide in with ease, the clunk of the landing gear popping out underneath us. We came in for a landing, and we stopped on the runway.

Again I am used to WN's quick taxing....now this is AA and DFW so forget all that.

We landed on time...got to the gate maybe 20 minutes later but we taxied by an ATA L1011 so that totally made up for it! We had to close the window shades to keep the aircraft cool. Took a bit to get off the plane but we finally got off.

I decided to take the Train around the airport to see the new D terminal.

I was sent a text stating our very own Mario was here at DFW also. I found his gate and walked over and ran into Mario. WHAT a kick to run into another a.netter and guy from here, and it was not even planned! It was great to meet him, very nice guy, and we chilled for a bit until his flight was boarding. Mario, it was great to FINALLY meet you as unplanned as it was! To quote what you said.. "HOLY ****!" ahaha.

I headed back to my gate down the Terminal and checked in for my flight to get my Boarding Pass.

The flight was coming from LAS so it was a bit delayed but not by much. 757 pulled up to the gate.

I spoke to the crew a bit just to chat and pass time, very nice crew. I think they were DFW based, not 100% sure.

I smiled big time when I saw for sure it was an ex TWA 757. I absolutely LOVE the ex TWA 757 and this aircraft was the whole reason of my trip Smile

I boarded, again group 4. VERY Light load on this flight, so I had a whole row to myself, not bad at all!

I quickly ate my dinner I Had purchased. We backed out, and lightning hit the field near DFW, oh goodie! We stopped and the TV came down to show us the safety Briefing. I am always always intrigued to watch a TV do the safety briefing. being I am so used to a live person. I watched it with enthusiasm. Then it was repeated in spanish.

We taxied out the LONG way of course to R 36 R. We sat and waited near 40 minutes to take off, something about maybe the 15th plane to take off? Silly

We turned to the runway FINALLY...and faced a GORGEOUS Sunset holy cow. It actually made me gasp. Beautiful cloud formation, the way the sun was hitting it, oh man...

We immediatly thundered down, never failing to experience that 757 thrust. We took off in 10 seconds and just seemed to leap into the air. The clunk of the gear doors opening was heard underneath as we climbed to our altitude, lighting flashing in the distance.

I plugged the headphone into my in flight radio and listened to the radio for the rest of the flight. Enjoying the amazing lightning show, I mean actual lightning bolts were flashing out of the clouds.

It was calm and peaceful. Then the Drink Cart came by, and I smiled so big because it still had the TWA logo on them!!! Smile Now I really felt like I was riding TWA again. Got the usual, coke and snack.

Soon in no time it was time to land at STL.

We cleaned up, tray tables and seat back in up right position, yada, yada same old story, been there, flown that..

More Lightning show as usual. Flaps came out, landing gear comes out, We turn for R 30 R, and we land down smoothly. We stop and get off the runway. We head to gate C-24.

I stood up, and thought to myself, this is man...once DL gets these birds...no more riding TWA for me. These ex TWA Birds for the 757 is what kept TWA alive for me. No more will we have the interior, or the TWA logo on the drink carts Sad . It felt like to me...I was riding the 757 for TWA One...Final..Time back to its home, Lambert-St. Louis Intl Airport. Welcome home TWA, may you never be forgotten....


Alex

nwafan20
07-11-2007, 12:47 AM
Great trip report! Thanks for sharing, funny about meeting Mario!

PhilDernerJr
07-11-2007, 05:10 AM
Great report. Sucks you ran into Mario. ;)

AirtrafficController
07-11-2007, 07:38 AM
great report

RDU-JFK
07-11-2007, 08:21 AM
Can someone remind me why the ex-TWA 757's are a favorite among many besides evidence of the old airline?

Thanks!

Alex T
07-11-2007, 09:41 AM
Can someone remind me why the ex-TWA 757's are a favorite among many besides evidence of the old airline?

Thanks!

When AA had their 757's, it was the Hard Blue seat with the white diamonds scattered all over the seat, seat pitch was 31 inches and it was a bit tight.

The ex TWA ones had 32 inches of seat pitch, extra padding in the seat and head rest area, and just gives a bit more roomier feel, in my opinion.

However, the AA 757 have the ports inside them, TWA ones did not.

The rest is as you stated, simply remeninsce of TWA inside.

Thanks for the comments folks!

Alex

RDU-JFK
07-11-2007, 09:42 AM
Cool!

T-Bird76
07-11-2007, 01:13 PM
I was in the 2x2 side, cloth seat. My perfect seat would be AA's 2x2 seating, with WN's leather seat and seat pitch, oh wait..did I just describe YX? Hmmh.. Silly I should try them out!

YX's seats have great pitch then WN's. Better try them soon before they have the AirTran cabin..

mirrodie
07-12-2007, 12:19 PM
Alex, it was nice meeting you. I had my phone off and charging when Tom texted me that you were at DFW. So 3 minutes before I met you, I got the text.

And thank God for that, cause if I wasn't expecting you, I was about to karate chop you!! :)

You caught me off guard! LOL

Alex T
07-19-2007, 12:30 AM
Alex, it was nice meeting you. I had my phone off and charging when Tom texted me that you were at DFW. So 3 minutes before I met you, I got the text.

And thank God for that, cause if I wasn't expecting you, I was about to karate chop you!! :)

You caught me off guard! LOL

HAHAHA Quite the Stalker I am heh?

As I said in DFW, Totally unplanned in meeting ya!

Us Aviation Geeks have to meet somewhere...no place better then at DFW IMO

Also enjoyed meeting ya as well finally!

Caught ya off guard to the point you uttered holy **** maybe 2 or 3 times? haha just in utter amazement of my presence.. 8)

Next time lets plan it a bit more ahead, :P

ok ill step off the soap box haha

Alex