Flight from Edmonton to Vancouver

My first flight was by Air Canada from Edmonton to Vancouver. The rest of the flight was provided by Korean Air with stop in Seoul, South Korea. I wanted to check my luggage right away so I am rid off this burden and can hang out with Lisa and Britney (Lisa’s 17 year old friend). I got in Air Canada line (it doesn’t look like Korean Air has a booth in Edmonton, they probably don’t have this city in their destination schedule) and as I was checking in, I was told by the lady that my flight from Edmonton to Vancouver is delayed, but she can try to put me on an earlier flight. It made no sense to me whatsoever, but I wasn’t arguing. I was there already anyway, so I might as well try to get on an earlier flight. It would mean that I’d have to spend more time in Vancouver, but that sounded much better to me than spending more time in Edmonton.

It was 9.20am when I got a boarding pass for Air Canada flight that departs at 9.50am. I have no idea why that check in lady would tell me that my flight is delayed when it wasn’t scheduled to leave until 11.20am, but whatever.

I was very short on time so I just gave quick hugs to Lisa, gave Britney a wave, promised Lisa to stay in touch over email (I can do it, but she needs to send me her email first – she’s got mine, I’m still waiting for her to email me) and popped myself in line to undergo security check. Unfortunately for me, the line there was endless.

It took forever for me to get my turn and once I went through, the security decided that they need to closely examine my camera bag. I obliged (of course, the only other option is to turn around and leave) but have reminded the young man that my plane leaves in less than 10 minutes. Luckily for me, he understood.

Perhaps I was lucky in a fact that he was a photography enthusiast. He admired my full Canon gear and asked me about what I take pictures of, had brief look at everything and let me go fairly quickly even though I had my tiny bottle of oil of oregano with me. Fluids and gels of any kind are a big no no on aircrafts nowadays.

As he was going through my bag and doing chemical analysis of vapours to make sure I don’t have any hidden explosives there, my name was announced on the speaker system calling me to deliver my ass to the gate or miss the flight. I have reminded the man that I have got to go and luckily he let me.

He sort of cut his job short and took chances for not examining my bag thoroughly, but I’m no terrorist and they really were calling for me. To add insult to the injury, my name was being called repeatedly as I was running through the airport, prompting several people to shout at me – you must be Mark they’re calling. Embarrassing.

I have boarded the plane last minute, we took off without delay and got from Edmonton to Vancouver in about 1 hour and 14 minutes. The flight was relatively painless, except from excessively obnoxious and loud pair of girls sitting across the aisle one row back. They were literally yelling like they’re at the party. I felt tired because of no sleep last night and their shriek made it impossible to take a nap. Luckily it was a brief flight. And I got a complimentary plastic cup of tomato juice (my favourite in flight drink).

Soon enough I was in Vancouver and there was no turning back for me anymore, even if I wanted to. I would never want to. I longed for this moment for so long, going back was not an option. There are so many places to see, so many things to do, so many girls to f….. Sorry, couldn’t help :o)

Luggage Size Issues

My luggage ended up being much larger than I expected. I cut down on items significantly, yet it still grew to be a monster. Perhaps having an extra set of shoes and bagging an extra camera bag did it. These two seemed to have taken up one third of available space. I had to save camera bag space for what it’s meant to store – my camera, lenses and a laptop computer. That itself was heavy enough so any thoughts of trying to squeeze more in there were easily defeated. I had several baseball caps, mostly unused that I wanted to take with me to Cambodia to give to kids, but there was no chance I could shove those in. I was able to force several small packs of chewing gums in so I should be good as far as stuff to give away is involved.

Traveling light is the secret to successful long term travel. I swear I trimmed down my items to only absolutely crucial pieces, then threw half of it in garbage yet in the end I still had a case full of stuff I could not fit in. Complete packing fail on my behalf. I’m sure I’ll be getting rid of some of those as I go along. Hauling it from place to place will teach me.

I’m however secretly hoping I would be able to get myself a better suitcase once I have reached my destination. The one I have is not very good. It’s one of those cool one with wheels, but it’s very easy to tip and exceptionally difficult to get back on the wheels. It’s also not very sturdy and lacks convenient side pockets. The sturdiness is the most significant downside which became apparent halfway through packing – the zipper seam got ripped as I have attempted to close it. Cheap piece of junk! I’m just gonna pray and hope it will make it all the way to Siem Reap without completely breaking apart. I will get myself a proper bag once I got there.