How to occupy oneself on a 14 hour flight from Dallas to Seoul

Dallas Travel Blog

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Enormous sculpture of "hands" in the lobby of Korean Airline's terminal in Dallas

If you’ve ever gotten “antsy” on a five hour flight across the USA, what in the world do you do to pass the time on a fourteen hour flight?

 

I managed to eat two complete meals (lunch and dinner) as well as a snack in between; drink three bottles of water, one cocktail, two glasses of wine, one cup of orange juice, three glasses of water, two cups of green tea, one cup of coffee; climb over the fellow seated on the aisle in order to visit the lavatory five times; watch three movies, one television show, play video blackjack; read; listen to my French lessons; listen to tunes on my Ipod and annoy Mark by taking pictures.  Only one thing was missing……sleep!

 

We’d slept fairly well in Dallas the night before and luckily our flight’s departure was at 1050am, since we “overslept” until 0800 and had to scurry downstairs for breakfast and the van ride to the airport.

Still in good spirits after 10 hours of flight with 4 more to go.

 

We checked in at the Korean Airways counter with plenty of time to spare, although my best laid plans of dressing up for the flight, on the off chance that we might be able to upgrade to First Class, were all for nought.  No problem, we were given a window and an aisle seat with the middle seat vacant in Coach so we really couldn’t complain, especially since the flight was only costing each of us $172 round trip plus taxes.

 

We boarded our flight and arrived at row 30, only to find a gentleman already seated in the middle, between our window and aisle seats.  Since we didn’t really care to direct our conversations across a complete stranger for fourteen hours, we graciously offered him the aisle seat so we could sit together.

Our meager serving of Bloody Marys....half full, 2 icecubes and enough vodka to knock your socks off!
  Big mistake, we quickly realized, when it became evident that we had left numerous items such as computer, headphones, camera, eyeglasses, etc…. .in the carry-on luggage which had already been stowed in the overhead compartment.  This was the first of many times our neighbor was obliged to step into the aisle to allow me to pass.

 

After take-off, the excellent Korean Air service team went into action.  There were twelve flight attendants on this wide-body 777 but it seemed like many more.

Like delicately painted porcelain dolls, these young ladies scurried through the cabin working proficiently to care for the needs of the many passengers onboard. They’re really trying hard to give the rest of us a bad name!

 

We thought it amusing, during the initial drink service, when we were served  Bloody Marys which amounted to a half glass of liquid, including the mixer and two ice cubes!  We were even more surprised when, during the lunch service, we were given an instruction card on how to eat our Korean meal called, Bibimbap.

Sitting behind the curtain separating us from "Prestige Class"!
  We could have ordered an American meal but instead chose to indoctrinate ourselves as soon as possible to Eastern ways but we didn’t realize we would need instructions to do it!

 

It was a very interesting meal, with some sort of meat in it, which Mark insisted was Alsatian.  There were also portions of cooked mushrooms, courgettes and  bean sprouts which we were instructed to mix with the steamed rice; hot, red pepper paste and sesame oil which accompanied the meal.  On the side was a portion of pickles as well as melon chunks. Our initiation into the world of Korean pickled things had not gone too badly.

 

Several movies and bathroom breaks later, just about five hours before arrival, we were treated to one last meal.

Our Korean lunch of Bibimbap....ground meat?, bean sprouts, courgette, mushroom and seaweed with accompanying rice, pickled something, seaweed soup and fruit!
Even though we’d done nothing but sit on our backsides for the previous nine hours we felt obligated to partake, so as not to insult our hosts!  A rather uninspiring combination of salmon chucks with penne pasta, peas and cream sauce graced my plate along with another pickled vegetable; hot roll and raspberry cheesecake.  More like the “American” food you used to find on the U.S. carriers before much of the hot meal service was eliminated.

 

Our flight went off without a hitch, well except for the gentleman on the aisle who was awakened by a glass of water dumped into his lap when I attempted to step over him (in my First Class dress) after returning from ”le petit coin”.  Yes, my mom did raise me better than that, but that was years ago.

 

We touched down in Seoul, right on-time at 3:00pm on Sunday afternoon, which was fourteen hours time difference from Dallas, where it was just turning 1:00am on Sunday morning.

Instructions on how to properly assemble our lunch.
Well, I think I got that right…… I always keep my watch on Phoenix time.

 

Now it was the search for the KAL limo which was to take us on the eighty minute ride to our hotel in downtown Seoul.  A hot bath and cup of tea were waiting for me as well as unimaginable adventures for the next three days!

 
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Enormous sculpture of hands in t…
Enormous sculpture of "hands" in …
Still in good spirits after 10 hou…
Still in good spirits after 10 ho…
Our meager serving of Bloody Marys…
Our meager serving of Bloody Mary…
Sitting behind the curtain separat…
Sitting behind the curtain separa…
Our Korean lunch of Bibimbap....gr…
Our Korean lunch of Bibimbap....g…
Instructions on how to properly as…
Instructions on how to properly a…
The cabin of the Korean Air 777.
The cabin of the Korean Air 777.
Really cool monitor on the seatbac…
Really cool monitor on the seatba…
A very hazy look at Seoul from our…
A very hazy look at Seoul from ou…
Mark after 10 hours of cramped leg…
Mark after 10 hours of cramped le…
Dallas
photo by: chiyeh