The end of a year in Geneva

My year at CERN is over, and on Tuesday I made the long flight back to The States (to the farthest end in fact, way over to Seattle). That’s 15 hours of flight time, covering a 9 hour time difference, with only a squeaker of a layover in Newark. I got very lucky on the transatlantic leg when the window seat in my two-seat group was left empty. Except for the flakey A/V equipment on both of my seats, I’d say it was my most pleasant flying experience yet. The view of Mont Blanc and it’s minions layered ridge after ridge as we tore through the egg carton cloud layer was incredible. Those clouds have refused to leave Geneva for weeks. These are the things that make every airplane ticket worth while, I don’t care where I’m going.

Given the hoops I had to jump through, or queues to shuffle through to be more accurate, it is surprising that Continental gave me such a short layover. There was immigration, baggage claim, customs, a side trip to a plant and animal products inspection, rechecking my baggage, and finding my gate, all somehow squeezed into an hour and a half. I was the last person to board the flight to Seattle and they were waiting for me, but somehow we lifted off early.

I arrived in Seattle a little before 5 pm, and by holding out until 10 pm (7 am Geneva time) I was able to make a full 24 hour day of it. There was some sleep on the plane, but it hardly deserves counting.

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