This past week, I made my first trip - ever - to Europe.
And it was awesome.
When Charlie asked me what I enjoyed the most about the experience, I hesitated because the whole thing was amazing. Including but not limited to my upgraded international flight to and fro.
Our company policy requires that any time we travel internationally, we must fly Business Class or, First Class, if Business Class is not available. I've flown First Class only a handful of times in my life - and only because I've been bumped. I've never actually PAID for the upgrade before, because to me - I'd definitely rather save the money (which is usually 2X as much) since I'm still getting to where I need to be, albeit perhaps a bit less comfortably. But after flying in the "front of the bus" for the past week - I'm afraid I can never go back to coach/economy.
I've tasted the sugar and it is SWEET.
For example, on my 9-hour flight to Rome, Italy, I was greeted upon boarding the plane, with a glass of champagne. NO, I didn't have two glasses of champagne. (OK. I did. But in this photo, one of those glasses belonged to the passenger sitting next to me....)
There were warm nuts, cheese and crackers, wine, fresh fruit - and a delicious dinner. There was even a HOT FUDGE SUNDAE, made to order, and a plethora of movies available.
I had a huge seat that fully reclined to a bed, in addition to a thick blanket, and pillow. My flight attendant provided me with a little toiletry case that included an eye cover, ear plugs, lotion, tooth brush - toothpaste - combs and assorted supplies that a worldly traveler may need.
When I got up from my seat to go use the restroom before retiring for the night, my eyes fell upon the people in coach who were separated from my section by a thin curtain; they were packed together like sardines and trying to sleep while sitting straight up. My heart broke for them. So I contemplated my good fortune....
And promptly fell asleep.
When I awoke, it was daylight and we were flying over the Atlantic Ocean...
And then, the breathtaking Alps.
As I was taking these pictures, I was freaking out.
Not just because of the incredible visible geology, but because of the sheer magnificence.
OH MY GOSH.
THIS IS GORGEOUS!
I'VE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING SO BEAUTIFUL IN MY LIFE!
WOULD YOU LOOK AT THIS!
Then the flight attendant brought me breakfast - and instead of worrying about the amount of food I'd consumed on this flight ... I should have just realized that it was a good primer for the unbelievable culinary week ahead as I traveled throughout Italy.
... to be continued.