Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Goodbye, Windy City…Hello, Texas!


It was quite a weather shock to leave beautiful, warm, and sunny Arizona and end up in cold, wet, and windy Chicago. Luckily, we wouldn’t be staying long.

But, since we were in such a lovely place, of course Giordano’s Pizza had to be enjoyed for lunch!

Of course!

IMG_8827   IMG_8828

Their menu is enticing. To be honest, I’ve never really looked at it before! We’ve always just ordered a pizza!

But with some healthy goals in mind, I decided against it today.

That’s right…no Chicago-stuffed pizza for me!


I got some minestrone soup, which had lots of yummy vegetables and beans for protein. And, it was only a whopping one-hundred twenty calories for this giant bowl!

Being cold and wet made this soup taste even better as it warmed me up.


I also got this Greco Roman Salad with a vinaigrette dressing on the side. I didn’t even use the dressing, but that wonderful chunk of feta cheese flavored each bite.

It was a nice meal for me, and very filling. I didn’t even miss not having some of the best pizza in the world!


After our late lunch, it was time to drive through the rain back to the airport. You can see those flags going to town on the right…it was really windy!

Yuck! My least-favorite form of weather is wind!


Hi, Midway Tower!

These guys are always swamped but always awesome, too. It’s actually a nice place to land because they do their job so well.

No offense, guys, but it’s way too cold to stay. We’re outta here!


They wanted us to depart from the same spot that we had parked just a few hours before, but there was an airplane just in front of us. Gladys doesn’t have the best turning radius, so we got moved so that we could actually leave the ramp!

Double-bonus: it was actually closer to the door for our passengers to arrive!


Just above our wing, can you see the city skyline of Chicago? It’s a nice place. I haven’t had time to really explore it in years, but it was way too cold to consider anything like that today.

Besides…I’m anxious to get to Dallas to see my family!


We received a progressive taxi to the beginning of Runway 31C and held short there to wait for some arriving traffic to land.

Can you see his lights out there? He just broke out of the rain clouds on final approach.


This is the hold-short line at the edge of every runway entrance. The two straight lines mean that we can’t cross, but if we were on the runway trying to get off, we could cross the two dashed lines to get to a taxiway.

Does that make sense? Any time that you see double lines first, you need permission to cross it.

El you no a crosso.


Here he is! We were waiting for this Southwest Boeing 737 to land. As he passed, Tower cleared us to “Line Up and Wait,” which meant that we could enter the runway and get ready for takeoff while he was also still on the runway. We just sat the beginning until he exited the runway at the end.

Then we were cleared for takeoff. Let’s get out of this drab weather!


On our climb, we didn’t get out of it quickly. There were cold, icy layers up to about 9,000 feet tonight.

Luckily, Gladys is a champ and climbed us above it before we were starting to get tired of seeing nothing outside our windows.


This was our view on top of the clouds. Isn’t this so much better than rain and muck?

We had a gorgeous sunset for almost the entire two-hour flight into Dallas tonight. So beautiful! I could get accustomed to views like this!


We hurried up to Flight Level 400, or 40,000 feet. Above 18,000 feet, they are called Flight Levels and are referred to by the first three numbers.

For example, here, we are climbing through Flight Level three-eight-four on our way to Flight Level four-zero-zero.

Does that make sense? I’m so good at confusing today!


I loved this picture. It reminded me of some orca whales skimming on top of the water with only their funky fins showing. It doesn’t take much to get my little pea brain to pretend with some cloud shapes!

At least I didn’t try to speak whale to them, like Dory.


Jet contrails high, and jet contrails low. What a pretty sunset to make them even cooler!


Not soon enough for me, we finally had the lights of Dallas under our wings. It’s been several months since I’ve seen my sister and her family. I can hardly wait!


And, no matter how hard I try, it’s impossible for me to get a still shot of a city at night while flying along in a bumpy airplane!

But Dallas is pretty large, in case you were wondering. I love it here.


There was construction all over the airport, which made finding the FBO that much more of an adventure. And, on top of that, the runway that was closer was closed! So we landed on one side of the airport and had to taxi to the other side!

And I’ve never been here!

But, like most Towers, they helped us find our way. Controllers are so nice!


This is my first time to the Southwest hub of Dallas Love Field. How fun! Every other time that I’ve been to Dallas, we’ve landed at Addison, a corporate reliever airport just north of here.

This is also the first time to Texas (other than a fuel stop) with this new job. Yeehaw!


This microscopic rental car was waiting for me! I got to drive a little north to spend the night at my sister’s new house.


And, just so you know, it’s gorgeous! I’m just sorry that I got there at 10:30 at night!

What did we do before GPS on our phones?!

It was so nice to visit with T’liese and Joe, and to wrestle with Evan, and to finally meet Baby James. I think that you’ll like the pictures these next few days!

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