On the second of my two trysts with New Zealand, one enclave in particular attracted my attention, despite the weather being uncooperative both days of my stay. This year, when I should be galavanting around Europe to take in all I can before I commit myself to the insane asylum of localizing a manufacturing line to Charleston, I admitted defeat to there being too many unvisited places in Europe and booked a flight to New Zealand instead. I landed scrutinizing a rain shower and double rainbows to the north, but Auckland airport — and my luggage — remained, incredibly, dry.
Places that begin with S — Seattle started the love affair with this letter, Switzerland spurred my eyes upward to the high mountains, and Singapore sparked my curiosity. A friend’s wedding a few weeks ago brought me to San Francisco, nearly 3000 miles away on the opposite end of the continent.
In the last year, I’ve been fortunate to fly on four planes I never figured I’d take: N777UA, the 747-8I, the 777-300ER, and, this year, the 787. Over a decade separates the first flight of the 777 from that of the 787, and although the two might look alike at first glance, it’s surprising how little the new plane seems to differ to the unsuspecting passenger. After all — a widebody is a widebody, right?