Push Button Paradise
Sun, 29 May 2005
The bookings.nl site is a great way to book a hotel in Amsterdam--I found a nice little spot off the Dam that I never would have found otherwise--but they need a way to specify whether you'll get a room where heavy construction is going on 20m outside your window.
My technique for quickly overcoming jet lag: don't sleep much on the flight. For eastbound travel, get a flight that arrives in the morning or early afternoon, and stay in the sun with lots of exercise (walking) the first day. By nightfall, you'll be completely exhausted and sleep well.
It pays off to drink lots of water on the plane, and to not drink alcohol or caffeine.
European cities, especially Amsterdam, come much closer to a Christopher Alexandrian ideal than do American cities, especially Phoenix.
Coach class on Continental has power outlets, but with no actual power flowing.
A good way to get ahead of lots of people in a crowded airport is to take the stairs when everybody else crams on to a tiny escalator.
I truly appreciated, over the course of an entire week of CNN International, only hearing about Michael Jackson once.
Continental gets low marks for their web experience. After misplacing your bags, you get a claim slip with the URL "www.continental.com\service" on it (yes, that's a backslash and no, the URL doesn't work, even with a forward slash). Dredging their site, you can actually find a way to check the status, but it doesn't give vital information (like the dropoff window) so you have to call the 800 number anyway. In Continental's defense, however, they did have my luggage in hand in 12 hours, and at my doorstep another 2 hours after that.
It's good to get back home. -m
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