We are in the air with the A380

Trip Start Sep 09, 2009
Trip End Sep 23, 2009

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Flag of United States  , California
Sunday, September 13, 2009

Up Up & Away – Here we go

I woke at about 5am and there was no way I could go back to sleep cause "I'm going to Disneyland". I bounced out of bed, showered and was ready in no time.  Then the painful wait begins before our car arrives.  6.30am on the dot we hop in the car and head off to the airport.  The rain was coming down, the freeway was busy but not as heavy as we expected.  We arrived at the airport at about 7.30am.

Qantas first class check in was quick and painless and before we knew it we were heading off through immigration.  We were given express boarding tickets, so we were able to bypass the queues and were processed immediately.

Into the bright lights of the duty free and Andrew stops to buy some aftershave “YSL Night Man” very yummy. From there it is through the gates and we head towards the huge A380 that is parked at the very end of the terminal.  Wow it is huge, it totally dwarfs the Virgin Pacific 737 parked next to it.  We drag ourselves away from ogling it and head up the escalators to First Class heaven.

We are then seated at the restaurant for breaky.  I have eggs Benedict, mushrooms and a very creamy hash brown which was delicious.  My only complaint was the hard poached egg and the very luke warm coffee.  Andrew had a poached egg, bacon sausage and very crusty toast, which is impossible to cut with the plastic knife that you have.  

Whilst we were seated one of the QF staff members asked if we would like to have a massage or facial, they had two vacancies left.  Andrew was going to meet our accountant who was flying to Bali, in the business class lounge to say hi, so I took the massage appointment.

The spa was lovely decorated with a wall of greenery, very lush and elegant.  I was taken through to my room and spent the next half hour with a very pleasant massage.

No sooner had I gotten dressed and met Andrew back in the lounge, that our flight was called.  We then preceded down the elevator 2 flights to the boarding queues.  Economy to the left, which was a horrendously long line, business to the right and first down the centre.  We waltz through this entry point and you can feel all the economy passengers’ evil eyes on you lol.

The A380 has double story airbridges, with business class boarding upstairs.  We are on in no time and welcomed on board, this is the moment we turn left where everyone else usually goes right.  The first class suites are huge.  I have 3 windows to my suite, which would be equivalent to 3 economy rows.  Andrew is sitting in seat 3A and I am behind him in 4A.

I am totally embaressing him by taking photos but I have decided that I will never see these people again so bad luck.  This is our holiday and memories so so baby but be prepared to be embaressed.

The FA’s are lovely and tell us how proud they are of the A380.  We wait about 1\2 hour and a few glasses of Taittinger  Comtes De Champange later we are taxing for take off.  One of the neat things about this aircraft is that it has a camera in the tail and you can watch take off on your tv screen.  The aircraft is very quiet but it is a big bird and feels like it takes forever before she actually lifts off.  We are in the sky on the way to the House of the Mouse – Andrew even did a little happy dance before we took off, blink and you would of missed it but I saw it and that is all that counts.

Our menus have been handed out for lunch and I think what is extremely cruel is that you can bring up the menus on the tv to view, so the economy class are seeing what we are about to eat.

Ok to start with we are served canapés of Gruyere Cheese Gougeres and Crostini of Caramelised Onions, Spicy Sadines and vino cotto.  Delicious, in fact I get offered seconds, so I take another of the Crostini with sardines.

The next course I select the Spencer Gulf King Prawn and Green Pawpaw Salad with Nam Jim Dressing (whatever that is)

I will then tempt fate and try a steak sandwich again, I am determined to finish it this time without any critters.

There is a huge selection on the menu and when I get a bit of time I will give a few more details.  For now I might catch a movie and wait for the next course.

Andrew and I decided to dine together, so I joined him in his suite where the table was extended for the two of us.  I mentioned to Drew that I had ordered the prawns and as he hadn’t, a quick word to the FA and they were placed on the table for both of us.  Delicious juicy prawns but the meal was a bit dry as they hadn’t given us our Nam Jim dressing which was a lemony grass style sauce which the FA rushed to us when she realised, although too late to add with our meal , did add a better exotic flavour when I added to the off bits of left over salad.

For mains Andrew ordered the snapper poached in coconut milk and garam marsala, served on a bed of bok choy.  It smelt delicious and Andrew declared it as devine.  My steak sandwich was adequate without the added critters, which we let our FA in on the story and she thought it was amazing but declared you would not get that on the A380.............................(ok I will share my story briefly.  On my last first class flight with Qantas, I ordered a steak sandwich.  When I went to take a bite, a cockroach crawled out of the lettuce mix of my meal.  I grabbed my napkin and captured the invader.  I nudged my hubby and with wide eyes, told him what was in my grasp.  Buzzers were pressed and FA came to investigate.  I actually felt guilty and felt that they must of thought I'd planted it there, as this doesn't happen in real life - not in first class lol. 
The FA's were lovely and offered me a selection of anything I wanted in the duty free mag.  but it felt like I was being bought off and only added to "our dirty little secret".  I decided to decline the offer. - there is more to the story and really in the long run I didn't feel that Qantas handled the situation adequatley but I am not the complaining type, so I let it slide)

For dessert I had talked Andrew into the Assiette of Desserts, which was three beautifully presented samples of a mango pudding with cubed watermelon, a delicious chocolate pudding with a praline topping and a coconut icecream served with a caramalized pineapple.  We followed this up with a shared plate of cheeses.

We are now full as a goog and it’s 3.15pm and the cabins lights have been dimmed to get us all ready for bed.  After a few champagnes, wines etc.  I am getting sleepy but before we change into our delightful Qantas pj’s we plan to do a lap of the A380.  Our FA said she’d let us know when all the meal services have finished and told us to first take the staircase up to business class go past the 70 odd seats, then into the premium economy and then down the rear staircase and back up to first via the economy cabins.

 Well we did our walk through and boy does this plane hold a lot of passengers.  When we got back to our seats, our FA had made up our beds, so we changed into our Designer Akira pj’s, which reminded me as prison suits.

I then had about 4 hours sleep, which wasn’t a solid sleep, as too many noises in the cabin.  I woke with the final 3 hours left of the flight, ordered breakfast which was a Schultz bacon, onion  & cheese pudding with a side of scrambled eggs.  It was really unusual more like a pie with puff pastry on top, served with a tangy relish.  Andrew is having his breakfast whilst I type this, so I am not sure what he is having but I am sure it is the usual bacon and eggs.

Well 2 hours left of the flight and I am still tired and we have a full day of Disneyland ahead of us.  Let’s hope we get our second wind, as our hotel room wont be available until late this afternoon.

-Update we have finally been able to access internet, it’s currently Saturday morning and we are at LAX waiting for our flight to Cancun.  I will fill in all the Disneyland details in my next instalment.

Martin you are going to love this, we were in our final approach for landing at LAX and we are watching the runway from the tailcam on the tv’s, we just as we are about to touch down about 800feet the pilot does a go around in the A380.  The nose pulls up and we are off again.  There was silence in the plane until the pilot explains it was due to traffic congestion.  That has to be a first.
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shelleyherbert on

Hi There!
sounds like you are living it large good on you! The plane sounded fab and meals yum, looking forward to the next entry!

Luv Shelle & Tony

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