Getting from California to London


Great Britain
Day 1 - Thursday, 8 May 1997

Our trip began just before 7 a.m. when our neighbor, Ken Kimble, drove us the short distance to the train station. Pokey 'ol Amtrak took 2 1/2 hours to get us to Richmond (you can drive it in 1 1/2 hours), where we boarded BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit). BART sped us to the Colma station where we caught SamTrans (a bus) to the airport. There we passed through close inspection to Virgin Atlantic's boarding area. We were fortunate enough to be upgraded to "Upper Class." And it really was "Upper." It was so nice, we could easily hope for such service all the time. They served juice or drinks immediately, and wonderful food - filet mignon, apricot tart.

Virgin Airlines 747

A faulty VHF radio delayed our departure from SFO. A replacement part was brought over from United Airlines and we got underway an hour and 52 minutes late at 5:52 pm.

Just before "bedtime" they offered us "snooze suits" or what we call sweat suits, so we could get comfortable. I accepted mine, Jim declined. Of course that meant I had to carry it for the rest of the trip, but I didn't complain too much. It made nice pajamas for the colder places we stayed.

During the flight we snoozed some, but the seats were less than comfortable because the head rest curved too far forward, so we couldn't get our backs straight. But there was plenty of leg room!

A Note About the Photos

Several people have asked what kind of camera we used to take the pictures. Of the 47 photos here (not counting the postcard picture of the highland calf ), most were taken with a Ricoh RZ3000 auto-focus point and shoot camera with a 38-130 mm zoom lens. Geri used a 5+ year old Nikon fixed focus point and shoot camera with a 35 mm fixed length lens.

The photo files were updated in September 2006 by scanning the color negatives with a Nikon Coolscan V ED then cropping and tweeking them with Photoshop Elements 4.0. The web page files were updated with HoTMetaL Pro 6.0.