I spent 6 hours in NY in October.
The conclusion: rapid travel is not for long-term travel.
My penchant for intense itineraries runs up to an endurance wall of 2-3 weeks. This stretch I had two weeks in southern Africa for business and pleasure, a weekend back to the US for the Chicago Seminars and immediately out to Dubai and the Horn of Africa for two more weeks of business and pleasure. I have spent the last week recovering and catching up on work.
- 11 UN countries, 9 new for me (plus 2 more Travelers Century Club countries)
- First time traveling with friends in 8 years, and apparently none ended up hating me
- 10 flight segments on South African, all in economy
- 6 flight segments on Ethiopian, all in economy
- 8 flight segments on Turkish, all in economy
- 2 flight segments on TAAG Angola, 2 on Jubba Airways and 1 on American, you guessed it: economy
- A lot of kms on the road in various Toyotas
Some quick airline observations for the blog posts that may or may not catch up:
- South African Airways runs a good operation, plenty of room in economy made even the 16-hour JFK-JNB flights pleasant.
- Ethiopian had a great showing, much better than my initial experience last December. (“Why are you here? We’re not flying to Kigali this week.”) Addis Ababa is now my preferred Africa hub, as much as one airport can be for such a huge continent.
- Turkish might be my new favorite non-Asian airline. Good operation and they let you rest on flights, no incessant announcements or duty-free flogging. Only big demerit for the bus gates in Istanbul, especially the trick ones where you go on a jet bridge to go down to a waiting bus. And a bit confusing when the government arbitrarily delays the daylight saving time change.