Saturday, October 31, 2009


Not posting much as you can see. Five weeks ago I planned a trip to München and booked a Lufthansa flight which was cheap. I then googled hostels in München and booked four nights in one. They are called Jugendherberge and there are thousands over Europe. I planned travelling on Thursday 15th of October, but the flights got expensiver and I booked for Friday 16th of October to the 20th. Done.

Then, a school-mate flew from Guadalajara to Hamburg yesterday and I picked him up at the airport. I waited for him to arrive and I thought he lost his connection and was flying on the next flight to Hamburg. I thought right and it appeared his luggage didn't arrive with him and we reported it to Lufthansa. As we finished reporting it, he saw his luggage on the bands. The Lufthansa guy gave us the thumbs up and we walked to the S-Bahn and got home.

The day after, today, I got up at 5 o'clock and got to the airport. As I tried to check in with the automatic machines, they went out of order. I just laughed and the guy behind me said “What did you do?” Nothing of course. The time for boarding was near and the system wasn’t online. When it was back, I successfully checked-in and got my boarding pass, but then I had to document my bag and there was a long queue to do it. When I was in the middle of the queue, my flight was already boarding. A lady was asking for passengers that departed at 7:30 and I was one of them. She told me to wait at the beginning of the queue and then the lady of the counter told me that I couldn't make it to my original flight, but she would change me to the next flight departing to München. I was happy and put me on the 11A seat (emergency exit of the A320). I was very happy! ? I have long legs, so I thank her. The weather was very poor: Low clouds, rain, poor visibility and very cold. Below (VFR) minimums as we pilots say.

I went through the security checkpoint and the metal detector beeped, don't know why, but I had no guns nor bombs or any stupid things. Probably it was the metal button of my jeans. The terminal is very cool. Very modern and simple. As any airport, they are infested with stores and duty free shops. My gate was 16 and I already knew the flight was delayed, so I walked around there and took photos of other aircraft on the gates. I saw an A320 landing and I knew that was our airplane so I stood in front of the window to see the arrival activities. 15 minutes after, they called for boarding and I walked into the jetway to board the good Luftbus. As I boarded, I asked the lead flight attendant if I could take some pictures of the flight deck and the captain allowed me. I said “moin!” as I walked in and both pilots laughed. The captain seemed to be happy and the first officer was woman. Major cool! I introduced myself and began to talk about my plans to apply for Lufthansa Flight Training and what I was doing in Hamburg. I took some pictures and asked if they made an ILS CATII approach, but they didn't. It was a normal ILS CATI approach. As I was ready to go to my seat, I made the final question: May I fly in the jumpseat? The captain told me kindly “Another day”. It would have been an experience, but maybe next time (On the return flight maybe?).
I got to my seat, checked the emergency paper and the instructions how to open the emergency door and waited until the boarding had finished. The flight attendants began to demonstrate the safety procedures and the pushback began. Packs off, engine startup. We taxied to runway 33 in Hamburg and we took off. You gotta love those takeoffs! AMLUH5G departure and climbed through the cloud layer and it was a pretty nice sight.

We had turbulence on the climb and I don’t know what our final altitude was, but I suppose it was above 29,000ft. Cabin service began and I drank orange juice. We started our descent and approached to Munchen Airport. It was very cloudy and we landed on runway 26R and we quickly taxied to our stand. I remained on my seat while everybody de-boarded the Airbus and when I got out of the plane I took some pictures. It was the Lufthansa A320 “Wiesbaden”.After that, we were taken by bus to the terminal and I waited for my bag. The München Airport is very big and modern. After I got my bag, I walked to the S-Bahn station of the airport to get to the Jugendherberge. The airport is not near from the city, so it took a while to arrive. It's very cold in München. Cloudy, rainy, cold: Typical European weather. The Jugendherberge is very nice. It has lots of rooms and the people here are families, bag packing students and groups of friends. I went to the city centre (Marienplatz) and it is very nice, but the temperature wasn’t cooperating. In the night I began to write this post.

The next day I went to the centre to say hi to a class-mate. She's studiing architectur in München and lives with her brothers. Her brothers and I went to the Hofbräu München: A very famous bar and restaurant in München. I drank 1 liter beer and I couldn’t believe that! Haha, I don't drink beer very often.
The next day I went to the Deutsches Museum. There are many technical things to see in there: Cars, airplanes, locomotives, boats, rockets, etc. The funny thing is I couldn’t find the locomotives and cars section. I took many photos and it would have been very cool to have flown all those airplanes in the museum. Then, I went to another museum, part of the Deutsches Museum, in a small airfield located in Oberschleissheim. I took many pictures of different kinds of airplanes, but my battery went dead there. I enjoyed it and returned to the Jugendherberge.

I stayed in München 5 days, but I could have been there in 4. On the second to last day I did nothing. Only chat and watch with my netbook.
Last day (20th October): I checked out at approximately 9:00am and went to the S-Bahn to the airport. When I got there, I went to the terrace and watched the activity on the platform. 737s (Bobbys), A330s, A340s, many A320s, Dash 8s, etc. My flight departs at 9:35pm and it’s 12:50am. 8:45 hours to go...

I wrote this part in the actual posting day (03.11.09):

When I decided to charge my cellphone, I began searching for a charger. There were no chargers! I only found one at the exit and I waited there reading the Airbus A320 FCOM (Flight Crew Operating Manual) with my netbook. Many airport employees were riding scooters! It was so cool and it must be fun to ride with a scooter in the terminal :)
When the cellphone battery finished charging, I went to the Lufthansa check-in machines, chose my seat (35F) and printed my boarding pass. I then approached a counter and the guy was bored. He laughed when I showed him my boarding pass and then he documented my bag. Bag free, I proceeded to a Lufthansa World Shop and saw some airplane models. A Hogan model of a Lufthansa 747-400 costed 14€ and I bought it. As I didn't want to stay there, I went to the security checkpoint and this time the metal-detector didn't beep. I then walked through the duty-free shops and searched my gate.

Most of the time before my boarding time I walked through the concourse and watched the activities of the arrivals and departures from the gates. Our nice Airbus A321 arrived the gate and 20 minutes later it was time for boarding. I walked into the Airbus and asked again if I could visit the flight deck. Both pilots were very friendly and asked some technical things about the Airbus. I didn't bother them asking if I could fly in the jumpseat and proceeded to my seat. The Flight Attendants were very friendly as well and I had a first look of how long the A321 was. I chose 35F, the second to last row of seats because I wanted to hear the engine exhaust hitting the fuselage.
Pushback began and the engines began to start. It was a longer taxi to the runway than Hamburg and I always enjoy taxiing. Runway 08L, another aircraft took off and we were ready for takeoff. The sound of the exhaust hitting the fuselage and the acceleration increased. We were flying and turned to the left to the North. Next stop: Home Sweet Home Hamburg :)
The Flight Attendants began with the service and I asked for orange juice. The pretty lady asked me "Don't you want a tea or a coffee?" I responded: "Maybe later" and she said: "No, there won't be later" and started laughing. I laughed too and my face went red. When she returned she asked me again and I said no thanks. Very friendly crew!
We started our descent and I recognized Hamburg at the moment I saw the Alster. We flew from the Southwest and continued heading North for an ILS approach to runway 15. The landing was very good and the taxi to the stand was very very short. It was an amazing flight and after everybody got out of the airplane I said bye to the crew and went to the baggage claim area and it didn't take too long to appear. Then, I walked to the S-Bahn station to my house.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Bye for now.

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