Yesterday morning 10.20am we, Guido and I boarded our plane to the US after a long goodbye from our friends who were kind enough to see us off at the airport.
The in-flight entertainment was kind of a let down. There were supposed to be 10 different channels, unfortunately not on-demand, however, of these 10 channels only 5 were operating... In the end I saw "Over her dead body" and "Run Fatboy Run" two amusing (romantic) comedies.
We arrived in Newark (New Jersey) at 1.20pm (EST, that's -6 hours from Switzerland) and proceeded directly to immigration. The whole immigration process was a breeze, the queue was very short and after 20 minutes we were already officially in the US. The first thing we saw when we came out of customs control, was a local school band playing in the entrance hall of the airport :). Next we transferred to another terminal to see where our plane would leave. There we had to go through another Security Check, which for a change did have a long queue, but since we had more than ample time the 30 minutes wait were no big problem.
To kill the time, it was now 2.15pm and our plane should leave at 6pm, we picked a food corner at random. There Guido met friends from Rapperswil and so we chatted for awhile and then even played a short "Schieber", a Swiss card game.
Then the waiting game really started, because we noticed that the plane to Pittsburgh which should have left at 3pm was still waiting at the gate at 5pm... Fortunately, we didn't have to wait "that" long. At 6.30pm we could board, but then had to wait for another 50 minutes in the plane (at the gate and on the taxi-way, there were 30 planes in the queue in front of us, after all) till we could lift off. There were a couple of disquieting moments, because the announcements from the captain didn't come through all too clear, with the background noise and everything. But I was quite sure I heard something in the like of "They lost all your checked luggage, but could retrieve it again and will bring it to the aircraft shortly". Yet we were towed away from the gate a mere couple of minutes later! Anyways, after an uneventful flight we landed in Pittsburgh at 9 pm and all our luggage arrived in one piece, expect for Guido's but he can tell his own story.
Leaving the airport we found a cab which brought us downtown to the hotel which was arranged by Guido's program. After dropping everything in the room we went out to grab a beer and celebrate our arrival. After looking around for a while we found a pub frequented by students.
At 11.45pm, thats 24 hours after I got up in Switzerland, we finally fell asleep.
Labels: pittsburgh, traveling, usa
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