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AA First Class, again and again...

AA First Class, again and again...
Trying to requalify for 2017 EXP in one month 
January 2016

January 1st means the clock resets for elite re-qualification.   And we're all back to 0 miles.  Thanks to an attractive October First Class sale, I've decided to pack a ton of AA flying into one month  and then play the field for the rest of the year.  So here we go... flying AA again and again in January to virtually re-qualify for EXP for the next two years.. all by early February.

We start on January 1st with the last leg home from our Christmas trip to New Zealand.  Our Singapore A380 landed just before noon and we headed to a quiet corner in the Admirals Club for a couple of hours.

At around T-50, we headed out to Gate 44 and the bus shuttle to the Bus Terminal, yet another reason to start playing the field.  Nice tour of the LAX tarmac on our ride.

Behold, the AA Bus Terminal.

Apparently AA uses an Escalade to transport CKs or other high value customers.  That would not be me.  LOL.

AA 5929
LAX-Denver
E75
3:00p-6:24p
January 1, 2016
Dinner

Oh joy.  We have an "emotional support" dog with us today.

And another dog?  Seriously?  The dog was fine unlike the obnoxious owner.

Clueless FA who woke people up while still at the gate to ask their meal selection, "salad with chicken" or "pastrami sandwich". No PDB until the captain announced a mechanical delay and then only after someone asked. In the air, she passed out ramekins of nuts but no drinks. Drinks came 10 minutes later on the meal tray. Chicken turned out to be the pecan crusted chicken which catering forgot to season today. Chocolate mousse cake was tasty.  

Naturally, once done, trays sat on tables for close to 15 minutes as FA disappeared into Y to help out there.  
On the other hand, she made two passes with mints, although I'm thinking that she forgot that she had already made a first pass.

And then there's dog lady who decided she wanted to chat with the FA and impress her with how often she travels.  Yes, the entire plane hears you and we are so impressed.   

A great trip but good to be back home, 9 days after we left.  And our own private train car from the A concourse to baggage claim.  LOL.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
This trip and YTD:
Fare: $119 (free EXP upgrade)
EQMs: 849
RDMs: 1,698

In October, AA offered a fare sale in the NYC-DEN market... $490 round trip First Class fares and included three JFK-LAX flight in the mix.   As a result, I could now comfortably requalify for Executive Platinum status both in 2015 (good until February 2017) and in 2016 (good until February 2018).  And with the current and now extended AA premium class bonuses, earn 43,000 RDMs per round trip.  At less than 1.2 cents per mile, what's not to like?   And with the new AAdvantage rules, I get double EQMs on every premium fare flight.

I wound up buying 8 JFK-DEN round trips, 4 for November/December and 4 for January.  My January 2016 flights are one per week, the exact same flights each trip.  DEN-LAX-JFK tonight on the return of my last JFK-LAX-DEN flights, then a 2 hour turn at JFK before starting the next round trip, JFK-LAX and LAX-DEN.  Wash, rinse, repeat.

Tuesday afternoon, I head for DIA and my usual garage Level 1 parking space.  Then up to level 5 to the South PreCheck.   Whoa, do they seriously use these lines for security somedays?

Only to find that the South PreCheck is closed.  Seriously?  3:15p on a Tuesday?

Before trekking to North Security, I checked out Bridge Security option.  Closed again.

So over to North Security where PreCheck was open but mobbed, not so much at the ID station, but the line for the conveyor.  Apparently, it was kettle central today.   Since there was only 35 minutes to boarding, I headed for the usual Gate 53.

DEN-LAX
AA 5977
E75
4:15p-5:55p
4:35p-6:25p
January 5, 2016
Dinner

Where it quickly became gate lice central.  When one person stands in line, everyone else decided they should as well.

Once on board, an excellent LAX-based crew offered open bar PDBs.  

Lots of legroom in row 1 on this E75.

Since I had added some lbs. on our New Zealand trip, I decided to see if I could go alcohol-free this trip.  Also food free at least on this flight, as I declined the salad (with chicken or salmon) or pastrami sandwich options.  

From last month, the salad with salmon.  It's actually pretty good if you are hungry.

Taxiing to the bus terminal. 

A three-class First LAX-JFK ticket gets you entrance to AA's Flagship Lounge, located inside the Admirals Club.  

Even a little eye candy tonight.

Tonight's menu looks good, at least on paper.

In reality, not so much.   Do you think the kitchen staff could check these every now and then?  Pretty pathetic.  You have to be pretty desperate to eat this stuff.

Yeah, these look really good.  Yikes.

I checked back about a half hour later and the staff had finally replenished the food offerings.

Salmon was pretty good.  Beef was terrible.

Dessert was very good.

LAX-JFK
AA 10
A321T
9:30p-5:45a +1
January 5, 2016
First Class
Late Night Supper

For domestic travel, this is about as good as it gets.  American's A321T flies between JFK and LAX/SFO and features 10 seats in First Class with lie flat seats in a 1-1 configurations.
Some cabin pics from a previous daytime flight.
 
 
 
 
And tonight, seat 3F.

AA amenity kit.

Pretty good IFE with a good selection of movies, both recent and classics.

Excellent crew tonight and a new more substantial January menu. Choice of Shrimp Sliders with Asian Aoili or the Wagyu Meatloaf.

Spinach and artichoke dip was excellent as always, especially with the warm roll. The pita rounds continue to be disgusting. I've tasted better cardboard.

The Wagyu Meatloaf was a pleasant surprise although a little dry. Could have used a little more seasoning and/or a lot more pomodoro sauce. Roasted garlic mashed potatoes were gross... tasteless and absent any garlic flavor whatsoever. Odd that they would highlight caramelized onions when I only saw a sliver of one inside the half of the meatloaf I ate.

Just prior to landing, scones and yogurt fruit smoothie were tasty.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $364 
EQMs: 7,497
RDMs: 23,008 ($0.158 per mile)
 

We landed at JFK just before 6am and I headed to the JFK Flagship Lounge.    Had time to do a little work, have a shower and a bite to eat since AA's morning transcons are a little light on real food.

At around T-30 I headed out to Gate 7 for the return flght to LAX.

JFK-LAX
AA 33
A321T
8:00a-11:15a
January 6, 2016
First Class
Breakfast (even though AA calls it Brunch...LOL)

Excellent JFK-based crew this morning. PDBs in real glass.

Today's menu...

The Yogurt Parfait is really the only consistently good part of the Breakfast offerings.

I had pre-ordered the Turkey Bacon Quiche, which was acknowledged.

Other than the soggy crust, this was really quite good.  On the other hand, "Grilled" vegetables with neither grilled nor edible. 

All in all, a very good flight with a rare but fun eastbound rock-n-roll landing in high winds and rain.

With a quick 45 minute connection, I headed to Gate 44 and the bus to the remote Bus Terminal.   Since the inbound equipment for LAX-DEN had not yet arrived, I headed to the Bus Terminal Admirals Club.   Pics from a previous visit.

LAX-DEN
AA 5976
E75
12:20p-3:45p
January 6, 2016
Lunch

No dogs on today's flight but an old familiar "friend"... B-list actor TJ Miller, who we had an encounter with a year or so ago.

Doesn't look an cleaner than last year, although he apparently changed his shirt.

And the rains continue at LAX.

Excellent LAX-based crew with our First Class FA doing everything right, from PDB to showing the catering page with full menu so everyone could see the details about the options. Choice of chicken salad or "Pastrami and Salad". Tried the pastrami for the first time since I've OD'd on AA chicken.

 Sandwich had cheap processed cheese and creamy coleslaw. Kind of like a cold Reuben. This may have tasted good as a hot sandwich, but it does not work when cold. Not even close. Yikes.  

The only good part of this meal was the chocolate cake which was very, very good.

Our approach to DEN on a much nicer day than in LA.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $609 
EQMs: 14,145
RDMs: 44,318 ($0.137 per mile)

Another day, another drive to DIA. 

Good news today as South PreCheck is open and empty.

A quick stop at the Admirals Club which was packed to the gills with BA passengers waiting for the DEN-LHR 744 departure.  Looks like they cleaned out the limited food offerings faster than the staff can re-supply.

At T-35, down to level 4 and the short walk to Gate A53.   DIA in Broncos fever mode with the departure boards sporting Broncos colors.  

What a difference a week makes, with the more typical lack of gate lice.

DEN-LAX
AA 5977
E75
4:15p-5:40p
January 11, 2016
Dinner

FA seemed pleasant enough but a little challenged today, although she did manage a PDB. 

A beautilful sunny winter afternoon in Denver.

And the mountains.

Afternoon in Vail.

Even though our FA had a Catering Service page clipped to the galley cabinet, he obviously didn't bother to read it as she offered a choice of "garden salad" or "vegetarian plate". Huh? When I inquired as to whether there was chicken or salmon with the "garden salad", she retreated to the galley and pulled out one of the trays. "Oh sorry, this is new to me. You must fly this route a lot." Okee-dokee. Wow. The garden salad turned out to be the Cobb Salad. She then proceeded to deliver a tray with the meal, drink and nuts all at the same time.

But whoa, Nellie. Even by USdbaAA standards, the most forlorn serving of "chicken" since the palace coup. I'm not touching this sucker.

Improvising to have nuts and drink first. It's not like the meal is going to get cold.

The Cobb Salad, just the salad, was actually pretty good if you hadn't had lunch and you ignore the chicken.

Gorgeous sunset as we approached LAX.

Pulling into the now way too familiar Bus Terminal.

Lining up for the bus shuttle.

After the bus ride to Terminal 4, up to the Admirals Club and inside behind locked door, the LAX Flagship Lounge.   Tonight's guests include Samuel L. Jackson and Kurt Russell on their way to Sydney.  Also CNN's Anderson Cooper who is on my JFK flight sitting in front of me in 2F.

A new menu this week.  Looks interesting...

But once again, reality is substantially less.

Chicken TIkka Masala

Shepherd's Pie

Fish and Chips.  OK I saw the fish (cod) but chips were no where to be found.

Unless the Potato and Yam Gratin was the "chips". ??

Vegetable Medley.  I think I'll pass on this one.

Tried a little of each.  Meh.  Surprisingly the Shepherds Pie was the least bad.  ;)

Gone are last week's specialty desserts, replaced by the lunch brownie-type sweets.

At T-20 I pulled myself away from the Alabama/Clemson National Championship Game and headed downstairs to nearby Gate 40.

LAX-JFK
AA 10
A321T
9:30p-5:40a +1
January 11, 2016
Late Night Supper

 

Since most everyone had already boarded, there was no line at the gate or on the jet bridge.   

Tonight's menu, the same as last week...

Another lazy, challenged crew tonight. I ordered a G&T and it arrived without a lime. When I asked for a lime, FA brought it a minute later with my meal tray.

Despite a warning from Flyertalker surftb15, I decided to to try the Shrimp Sliders with Asian Aioli. Yikes, looks like a whole lot of bun to me.

Looks like Hector is cutting costs by reducing the hummus and spinach/artichoke serving size.

And under the mass of bread, there is indeed some type of shrimp cake.

And when you get rid of the bun, it was actually pretty good. Nicely grilled and moist. The aioli was awful.  
There was nothing remotely Asian about it, tasted like Mayo from a 5 gallon Costco container.

By the time I got around to the ice cream, it was sufficiently melted to eat. But my God, is this Three Twins stuff garbage? Yeah, I know Haagen-Dazs costs more.  Apparently some people love the Three Twins ice cream, but perhaps handling by AA and/or the caterer took its toll.

Prior to arrival, smoothie and scones. Sorry for the bad pic. I was just waking up.

Apparently someone forgot that there is a new logo and has been for 3 years.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $854 
EQMs: 20,893
RDMs: 65,628 ($0.130 per mile)

Just a short walk from Gate 3 is the main Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge.

Wasn't hungry today so I hit the shower to wake up before heading back to LAX.

OK, maybe a little something to eat.

Then back down to the same gate and plane as our inbound. 

OK, just a little color mismatch on the monitors.

Yikes, glad I wasn't trying to get to EZE last night.  

JFK-LAX
AA 33
A321T
8:00a-11:15a
January 12, 2016
Breakfast

Boarding had already starting by the time I arrived.

Pleasant crew this morning although a little short on refined service skills.  Same menu choices as last week although I believe the wine list is a little different.

My quiche Pre-order was acknowledged with "you pre-ordered the eggs?"

Our service-challenged FA neglected to clear the fruit/yogurt before she brought the quiche and asked me "Can you grab that for me? I don't think it's too hot." while she cleared the fruit/yogurt dishes.  

The quiche was very good.  But I wasn't even going to try the sorry looking veggies.

Chocolate chip cookies about 90 minutes out, although milk was not offered today.

LOL on the "Warmed on board" line.

We pulled into Gate 46A almost 30 minutes early, right next to the Bus Terminal departure point.  

Looking back at our A321 from Bus departure.

Not a lot of passengers on this departure.

 

LAX-DEN
AA 5976
E75
12:20p-3:40p
January 12, 2016
Lunch

Fabulous Eagle crew today. Open bar PDB. Explained meal options in full. Attentive service the entire flight. Properly paced service with drinks and nuts before lunch. Then lunch. What a concept! Choice Pecan Crusted Chicken salad or the Pastrami Sandwich and Salad.

Wow, today's chicken was about 3 times the size of yesterday's chicken.

Freshly Ground Pepper? Well I guess at one time it was.  

Spectacular scenery on the way east.

And DIA in the distance as we vector to approach.

We arrived on time at 3:45p and I was home by 4:30p.   Back home for a day and a half and then off to Montréal.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,311
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $1,099 
EQMs: 27,441
RDMs: 86,938 ($0.126 per mile)
Denver-Montreal
Thursday, January 14, 2015
 
This morning I'm off to Montreal for a combination family visit and business meetings.   The earliest arrival time is with AA via PHL.   No traffic and no lines at PreCheck this morning and made it from our house to the Admirals Club in 39 minutes.  
 
 

FIfteen minutes in the AC and then I headed downstairs to Gate A48 and my first US Airways metal flight in a while.

DEN-PHL
AA 686
pmUS A321... ugh
7:05a-12:20p
January 14, 2016
Breakfast

Wow, what a piece of garbage this pmUS plane is. Uncomfortable seats, no power, less legroom. And yeah, I just love sitting in the galley. On the other hand, pmUS crew with one of the best mainline FAs in a long time working the F cabin. pmUS PHX-based FA John almost made up for the crap plane. 

Indeed, once in the air, our FA John used the curtain to block much of the galley action.

Apparently someone in catering is enamored with Stratas. Choice of breakfast strata or dessert strata this morning...

The strata was OK, sausage better. But the surprising thing was that the potatoes, though not crisp, were excellent. Very nice smokey flavor.

Sure, I was hungry this morning but I don't remember the last time I cleaned my plate on an AA flight.

After breakfast service, FA John made numerous passes thru to cabin for refills and curtained off the entire galley from view. Too bad there aren't many AA FA's like this guy. 

Passing over Chicago.

And on our approach to Philly.

Pretty ugly airport but interesting murals with a lot of fascinating history.

Downstairs to the shuttle to the Terminal F gates, home of the small planes and regional service.

Which is actually a pretty nice facility.

With its own Admirals Club.

At T-35, I headed downstairs for the short walk to F27.

PHL-YUL
AA 3767
CRJ-200... ugh
1:45p-3:20p
January 14, 2016

There is no worse plane in the sky than the CRJ.   Mercifully, this is only a short 75 minute flight.

Row 1 is the only "good" or less bad seating on this plane.  But only if you have an open seat.

I originally had 1D but at the last minute, some duffus selected 1F even though 1AC were open.  So while at the AC, I switched to 1C since 1A was open.   When I boarded, someone was sitting in 1A.  Fortunately, the Captain announced a weight and balance issue and asked someone in the first 4 rows to move to the back, and 1A decided to move.  Phew!

OK, there is one more reason to select row 1.  LOL.  Especially today. 

Inflight service including a complimentary snack for EXP elites.

Yeah, this plane is a little old and beat up.

400 miles later and a lot colder as we approach Montreal.

Heading to customs.

Yikes, looks like a few European flights just landed.

Fortunately, I have NEXUS which lets you enter the country without speaking to any customs/immigration staffer.   Just show your Nexus receipt and entry card at the exit and you are out.  

I usually book a room at the airport Marriott, one of the most convenient in terminal airports anywhere... a 3 minute walk from customs, upstairs thru and over the US departures wing.

One short escalator up and you are in the lobby.

Up to my floor 6.

And comfy room, with a parking lot view today.  Still at only US$110 a night, hard to complain.

After I dropped my bags, I headed across the street to pick up my Avis rental and headed downtown to see mom.  The later for dinner with my sister and brother-in-law.  Great meal at The Taverne in Westmount Square.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $215
EQMs: 2,069
RDMs: 4,138
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $1,314 
EQMs: 30,359
RDMs: 91,076 ($0.144 per mile)
Montréal-Denver
Saturday, January 16, 2015
 

I arrived back at the airport just before midnight on Friday and returned my rental to the Avis lot.  Man is this garage cold and dirty in the winter.   -12C /10F tonight and a wind chill that made it a lot colder,

Just follow the signs to the US departures wing and the Marriott.

How convenient is this hotel?  With Global Entry, I made it from my room to our gate in under 15 minutes.   

YUL-DFW
AA 1045
737-800
7:44a-11:15a
January 16, 2016
Breakfast

Choice of "Vegetable Omelet" or "French Toast". When I asked FA whether is was real omelet or the dreaded strata, she fessed up and confirmed that it was the strata. So, I opted for dessert this morning. Choice of croissant or a thin 6" diameter biscuit that looked like it had been run over by a catering truck. Maybe, that's the Canadian way.

Crew was a little distracted mid-flight as they seemed more interested in chit-chatting than clearing trays.

We arrived at the D Terminal, although at the far end at D40.   With 75 minutes to connect, I decided to walk to D15 and have a bite in The Centurion Lounge.  Good move as the new menu is outstanding. 

The Molasses Tabasco Smoked Pork Loin was simply fabulous... with Dijon Mustard Aoili and Pear Chutney.  Wow.    The Pulled Chicken Enchilada was also great.

At T-40, I headed for the SkyLink and Terminal C.  Yet another gate change this morning and AA has finally decided on C15.

DFW-DEN
AA 1184
MD-80 most comfy AA F seats.
12:45p-1:45p
January 16, 2016
Refreshments

The old MD-80 (aka Mad Dogs) are my favorite domestic airplane.  The most comfortable F seats in the fleet.  Like an old shoe.  Will be a sad day when these are finally retired.

Outstanding, indeed amazing service by FA Jesse who worked the F cabin. Wow. Loves his job and it showed. Open bar PDB (even for Steelers fans), drink orders for in flight before departure. Fast and efficient service from start to finish. Multiple refills. He never rested the entire flight. Outstanding. Choice of cheese or antipasto plates with lots more olives. Swear that AA owns an olive farm or got a great deal.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $212
EQMs: 2,156
RDMs: 4,312
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $1,526 
EQMs: 34,671
RDMs: 95,388 ($0.160 per mile)

And here we go again.  Back to the A concourse, with Bronco fever running high.

Our E175 is already here today at the usual Gate A53.

What a difference a day makes.  Absolutely no gate lice 1 minute prior to boarding.

DEN-LAX
AA 5977
E75
4:15p-5:40p
January 19, 2016
Dinner

Terrific FA today at least at the outset.  Amazing PDB service as she had a hand-written sheet with all the different cocktail options.   Anytime anyone asked for water she joked "that's not on the list."  LOL.   After the PDB though, she did seem a little challenged.  

Our MD-80 neighbor.

LOL...

Another beautiful sunny afternoon in the Mile High City.

Nice afternoon in the mountains.

Captain asked the FAs to sit for about 30 minutes as we went thru the worst of the turbulence, although quite frankly, there was only a couple of minutes of anything remotely bumpy.  Our FA Rose took drink and meal orders right after take-off.   Same old, same old choices.  Cobb Salad with chicken or vegetarian plate.   Shortly after she resumed service, the first thing she brought, even before drinks was dinner.   Even had the wrapping on it.   No nuts.

Doesn't look any better unwrapped.

The only good part of this was the hummus and the egg.

With no nuts, I had the hummus with my cocktail.

One bite of the salad.  Meh.

Our FA removed my dinner tray and then served the mixed nuts.  Say what??

Another beautiful sunset as we began our descent to LA.

A quick bus ride from the Bus Terminal and I head for the Admirals Club and the Flagship Lounge.

This week's menu.  Looks great on paper...

Pho Bowls. Now that looks interesting.

And the rest of the offerings.  Pretty bad.

Thai Chicken supposedly with coconut peanut dipping sauce.

Except that there was no dip.  I asked a server who said "yeah, everyone is asking about that".  She said the dipping is already on the chicken.  LOL.

The Miso Glazed Cod was simply awful.  No Miso I could taste.

The Pho was actually pretty good, especially with all dressed.

Everything else was forgettable.  

Nice to see the Signature Desserts back this week.   Not sure why they were AWOL last week.

The chocolate one was excellent.

At around T-25, I headed downstairs and over to Gate 42B... 

... where boarding had already started.

LAX-JFK
AA 10
A321T
9:30p-5:40a +1
January 11, 2016
Late Night Supper

Not sure what the problem was, but we stood in the jetbridge for a good 5 minutes before boarding resumed.   

Pleasant and efficient crew tonight with prompt PDB service.

Tonight's menu, same as last week.

I decided to go back to the Wagyu Meatloaf.  

The spinach and artichoke dip was pretty dry tonight...

... so much so that you had to dig it out with a fork.

The meatloaf was excellent especially with lots of pomodoro sauce.  Potatoes were completely tasteless.

And now for dessert, the artisan organic Three Twins Ice Cream, which many apparently love.

I just don't get it.   Maybe its all the handling before it gets to passengers, maybe it's the altitude, maybe organic doesn't travel well.   Sorry, but it just doesn't do anything for me. 

I slept great for 3 hours and then enjoyed a Strawberry Smoothie and mini-Cinnabon on descent.

We arrived 15 minutes early and I headed for the Admirals Club/Flagship Lounge.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $1,771 
EQMs: 41,319
RDMs: 116,698 ($0.152 per mile)

A short walk from Gate 8, back to my New York home, the JFK Flagship Lounge. 

At T-30, I headed downstairs and back to Gate 8 where my inbound flight 10 is now my outbound flight 33.

JFK-LAX
AA 33
A321T
8:00a-11:10a
January 20, 2016
Breakfast

Boarding had already starting by the time I arrived.   

As my usual 3F was already taken today, I headed to 5F the last row of the F cabin.   Excellent JFK-based crew today.  

Open bar PDB.

Today's menu.  I think I've seen this one before.

The yogurt parfait... a little light on the granola this morning.

The always excellent Turkey Bacon Quiche, pre-ordered and acknowledge. 

I missed the "warmed on board" chocolate chip cookie as I slept for about 90 minutes in the latter part of the flight.

LAX-DEN
AA 5976
E75
12:20p-3:40p
January 12, 2016
Lunch

Terrific LAX-based FA.  PDBs and proper sequencing of service once in the air.

Choice of Chicken Salad with pecan crusted chicken or Pastrami Sandwich.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $2,016 
EQMs: 47,967
RDMs: 138,008 ($0.146 per mile)
Denver-LAX-JFK
February 3, 2016
 

And here we go again, one more time to LAX, JFK and back... although three days later than planned.  When a foot of snow was dumped on Denver, AA's storm rules kicked in and I was able to move my flights without penalty.   Supporting the home team on Pena Blvd. to DIA.

I've been to DIA so many times that I know one of the best times to use the parking garage is when the signs day FULL.  LOL. Less competition for parking spaces. 

Not quite to FULL. 

Another PreCheck failure as the South Security PreCheck is closed this afternoon.

Everyone has Broncos fever...

On the way the Admirals Club, how is it possible to put an AA sticker up so crooked.

Admirals Club is reasonably uncrowded this afternoon.  Must be a light load on today's DEN-LHR BA flight.

And down to the usual Gate A53.

Denver-Los Angeles
AA 5977
E75
4:15p-5:40p
February 3, 2016
Dinner
 

Choice of Chipotle wrap or Vietnamese Noodle Salad with Beef. What a ridiculous combination of leftovers. Who thinks up this stuff? Sure, let's have noodles and lettuce and veggies on the same plate. The best part of this was the spicy Ginger Dressing which masks all kinds of sins. Good for dipping the veggies though.

Wow, very light traffic tonight on the 405.

We parked at the usual Bus Terminal and rod the always lovely AA bus to Terminal 4.

And a few minutes later, my LA home... the LAX Flagship Lounge.

I've been here more than a dozen times in the last few months and it is clear that the kitchen staff has never been trained in the art of service and how to be unnoticed and unobtrusive.  But tonight was the worst... obnoxiously loud chatter and laughter from the kitchen.  Why would we want to close the door?  We would have to open it to bring food out.

Clear tables?  LOL.

Same menu as my last visit a couple of weeks ago.

At least the had actually dipped sauce unlike my last visit when a staffer told me that the sauce was already on the chicken.

The "Signature Desserts" were no where to be seen tonight.  Indeed, there were no desserts.  When I asked the senior staffer, she said there was no room for them tonight but she would bring me something.  Nice gesture I guess.  But what she brought was not even edible. 

After a few hours in the underwhelming Flagship Lounge, I headed down to 47B.

LAX-JFK
AA10
A321T
9:30p-5:30a +1
February 3, 2016

 

Excellent JFK-based crew tonight. Professional yet friendly. Open bar PDB, in real glass. 

I was the only one eating tonight and accommodating FA even asked my when I'd like eat.  I had preordered the Pan Seared Crab Cakes.

The spinach and artichoke dip was much better than last time.

The crab cakes were very good especially with the tomatillo poblano cream sauce.

One the other hand, the Three Twins ice cream wasn't any better tonight.

At around T-30, after a couple of hours of sleep... strawberry smoothie and scones.

We landed almost 30 minutes ahead of schedule and I headed to my NY home, the JFK Flagship Lounge.

2016 EXP Cost and Mileage Log:
 
This trip:
Fare: $245
EQMs: 6,648
RDMs: 21,310
 
YTD 2016:
Fare: $2,261 
EQMs: 62,459
RDMs: 159,318 ($0.142 per mile)