Monday, October 29, 2012

OMG! - Positive experience with United Airlines?

I am stunned but I must relay our experience.  With our flight to VA canceled and our decision to drive to TX to let the storm pass we needed to get a refund from United Airlines for the flights.  No humans answered the phone at UA on Sunday so we went to the San Jose airport on the way out of town today to deal directly with a ticket agent.  We were braced for a fight knowing UA and I contemplated long term parking as I figured we would be in arguing with them all day.  But, JoAnn went in to talk with the agent while I waited at the curb.  She was back out with refund in hand in less than 5 minutes! - we are still barely over the shock.
Could UA be turning over a new leaf?  Experience with them in the past few years has been horrible.  It seemed the bean counters had won out and they have seemed intent to nickle and dime everyone to death (all the while being a s rude as possible).   Could this be a kinder and gentler UA?
I guess there is always hope.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sandy blows in changes . . .

The best laid plans . . .

In to Mountain View in preparation for flying east on Tuesday. Excccccccept (be very afraid now) big bad Sandy has caused everyone to cancel ALL the flights to the east coast.  Who would have figured a hurricane at the end of October threatening the eastern seaboard?  Good thing climate change isn't real and this is just a fluke. . .

So, looks like we will drive to Texas (an earlier plan) and fly to VA from TX after the storm has passed.  Stay tuned, all will be revealed in the final reel.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Ventana Wilderness Backpacking

“Challenging” hike by the guidebook.  From China camp on Tassajara Rd to Pfeiffer State Park at Big Sur.  First day rough trail with much brush but mostly downhill to Pine Ridge camp (8 miles).  Nice camp with water and good star viewing.  Tent without a fly under the stars.  Difficult night as the ground was hard and I didn't bother to dig hip/shoulder pits.  Too warm for the sleeping bag as well.  Second day about 6 miles to Sykes hot springs.  Great spot with good springs for long soak.  Great camp site, tired but slept well.  Only a few people in camp and at springs.  Our friend Martha snagged her foot on a stump and tore the skin on her sole.  J patched it up and she was OK on the walk out.  Third day about 11 miles out.  Lots of up and down.  Lunch at Redwood camp – very nice spot.  Canyons very steep and rugged.  Great oasis at creek at bottom.  25 miles in three days.  Can't say it was the easiest hike I've ever done but we made it.  Hopefully more where that came from.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Carmel Valley

"Home" for a while.  Ensconced with dear friends Kelly and Martha in the valley.  The weather is still beautiful down here and I'm perfectly happy to take advantage of it.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Diamond Way Western Retreat Center

First day of a week of having the retreat land all to ourselves.  Gorgeous place and no one but hawks and coyotes for miles.  Long days of meditation, hikes and just being.