Day 1 Tue 25/1. Newport Vic – Midvale UT. Way too many km

The travel gods must have been satisfied with their efforts on me New Years Eve as today ended up being relatively painless. My first trip with V Australia and generally very impressed.  Disappointed that couldn’t get bags checked all the way to Salt Lake (thus averting baggage charges with Delta) but happy that they didn’t quibble about me being a little overweight.  Bumped into the Woody & Chris McPherson (from Uni Ski Club and well known at Pub to Pub) and their friend whose name I have aleady forgotten who were off to Aspen and Steamboat on United.

Ended up taking off about 45 mins late.  As well as what seemed to be a completely non-functional air con systemin the terminal, the VA cabin crew announced that we were waiting because the airport baggage handling system had gone into meltdown / random mode and it was taking a fair bit of time to figure out which bags were supposed to go where.  Way to inspire confidence.  Anyway once underway all was good – plenty of entertainmet on the seat back, quite good food (well for a plane that is) and the VA way of doing things is quite a refreshing change from QANTAS.  As always getting some decent sleep would have been nice but I’ll wait for the next lifetime for miracles.

Ended up only a few minutes late into LA and as I was second front row in cattle class I got into immigration fairly quickly.  Only slow part was the last of a flight from China that was being cleared fairly slowly with lots of interpretation issues etc.  And the scene at customs looked like an episode from one of the Border Patrol TV shows – a thirty metre long table COVERED in foodstuffs and these poor officials poking through it all.  Got ridiculously sweaty lugging bags around to Delta terminal and got slugged $60 for bags – about what I expected.  So once again despite airline rescheduling and delayed takeoffs I had managed to NOT miss my connecting flight.

Had booked a window seat to Salt Lake but there was actually no window on my aisle!  Clear over California but increasingly cloudy approaching Utah and quite socked in at Salt Lake.  Picked up a quite new and pretty flash Chev Equinox AWD which although being a bit bigger that what I really need looks like it will cope well with doing some exploring.  Managed to drive to the hotel and did the first round of essential shopping – State Liquor Store, noodles and coffee – without killing myself and am now trying to force myself to stay up late enough to sleep through till the morning and finish kicking the body clock into its new timezone.  So far, so good

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