Sunday, December 18, 2022

Hanukkah in Israel

Today began our last trip before Baby Ernie's proximity closed our plane travel window for who knows how long.

My dear mother bought me an Apple AirTag for Christmas and I decided to use it to keep track of my suitcase. It feels a little bit like bugging my own phone but here we are.

Lydia's baby bump is getting bumpier and bumpier.

Finally this pregnancy started paying off. Lydia got to sit in the special people seat on the tram at the airport. Must be nice.

I wanna make love in this club (Hey)
In this club (Hey)
In this club (Hey)
In this club (Hey)

Our flight was delayed hours for deicing as it was snowing in Seattle.

It's funny that Istanbul is still such a gateway to the east. Fun fact: Istanbul is the most populous European city.

I have a unique illness where I like to record airline safety videos. 

We were sitting in cattle class but I appreciate them handing out little menus like we were important too.

The sour cherry juice caught my eye as something a little bit exotic. Yes please.

I got some good cinema time in on this flight. Bullet Train was very fun and had an amazing ensemble cast with a ton of fun cameos to boot. I'm not generally the blowhard braggart type but I, probably way before Brad Pitt, have also taken a bullet train from Tokyo to Kyoto.

Say what you want about Turkish Airlines but they are generous with the free booze. The food wasn't bad for cattle food.

Now I was just on a golden movie selecting streak. I really enjoyed Elvis too! I mean, it features the magnificent Tom Hanks which in my book makes a movie watchable all by itself, but it also taught me some (dramatized) bits about Elvis' life. For example the movie made it seem like Elvis' evil manager trapped him into the Las Vegas residency. Sadly Elvis wanted to go on a world tour but never once played outside of North America. His shady manager, "Colonel" Tom Parker, was essentially an illegal immigrant and was too scared to leave the country due to the risk of not being let back in.

There was what seemed to be a Russian child sitting in front of me that seemed to have been raised in a barn. I didn't check his passport or anything but he had a little gold chain and track pants on. He kept reclining his chair while I was eating which set off a Cold War. I'm a decent sized man and the seats are cramped, so it wasn't difficult for me to prop my legs such that the little russkie's dad had to ask me permission for him to recline. After a detente we agreed that the child would be allowed to partially recline but not all the way. Someday I will be the world's greatest diplomat.

It was fun because I think they were also on their way to Tel Aviv so I saw them a few more times. I made sure to always make lots of eye contact and smile at them. The Russians only respect strength.

Istanbul has a fun airport. It's funny I've been in the lounge here so many times that I could probably tell you the menu from memory. They have a station where a dude makes fresh pide, the famous baked Turkish flat bread.

I like Turkish delight, and I have on at least one occasion eaten about 40 free samples at this airport. They probably stopped that practice after covid because now I see not a sample in the house. It just goes to show, you have to follow your dreams.

It was late when we got to Tel Aviv, Israel and so we didn't do much besides go to the hotel and pass out. Getting through immigration was a bit of a hassle, and we needed to do some visa paperwork on arrival nonsense. Big sad.

On our cab ride from the airport we got our first baby mazel tov from the driver which I was excited about. We were in Israel during Hanukkah so I definitely did notice the Christmas tree on the hotel desk.

Any religion that involves free donuts is alright in my book.

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