Wednesday, September 29, 2021

living the dream -- or the reality?


Every dream contains the seeds of disappointment.

Icarus’s flight. The Trojans’ gift from the Greeks. Anne Boleyn’s marriage as the next ex-Mrs. Henry VIII.

I cannot remember when I first started hearing the rave notices of the Emirates first class suites. But raves they were. They sounded as if Emirates had managed to find the perfect balance of elegance and fun to make the less-salubrious aspects of flying at least bearable, if not forgotten. I needed to give it a try. I fly often enough that having a memorable experience would be a worthy quest.

Twice I have booked a suite on Emirates. And twice I have had to cancel the flights -- the latest being when The Virus swooped down on my India cruise in March 2020, leaving me with a touch of covid and no Emirates experience. It was not a good trade.

But I am persistent enough when the prize is worth the effort to keep on trying. And I thought I had this prize in my grasp. I booked a cruise with my travelling friends, the Millers, out of Vancouver to Tokyo. It was supposed to sail the ocean blue this September. And, by sheer luck, I found an Emirates suite I could buy with my Alaska air miles that would take me home after the cruise. Tokyo to Dubai to Los Angeles. It was my dream abirthing.

Then, Canada, Japan, and The Virus all got together on a dark stormy night in an Illuminati castle in Bavaria, and decided that that was not the trip for me. The cruise was cancelled.

I kept the Emirates reservation because Emirates no longer allows Alaska membership members to book the suites.  If I wanted the Emirates experience I would either hang onto this flight or shell out $19,000 (US). I decided to wait.

As you know, my Mexican-earned patience paid off. I came up with a plan to essentially sneak into Japan to connect with the flight I had wisely chosen not to cancel. And with all the odds against me, it worked. With a scare here and there to make the trip even more exciting.

So, after 11 hours of flight time from Tokyo to Dubai and 16 more hours in the air from Dubai to Los Angeles, was the experience a dream realized or a dream that crashed on the shoals of reality? Was I Icarus or Eddie Rickenbacker?

That is exactly what we are going to discuss in the next two essays. We could start the discussion now, but the in-flight internet system is slipping on and off. And, no, that is not a hint about my ultimate conclusion.

But I do promise photographs.

See you soon.

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