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Published: June 12th 2017
Geo: 39.0095, -77.4647
In very unexpected fashion, our flight was less than half full. I cannot remember the last time I was on a flight, let alone an international one, when there were near any empty seats. The load factor, however, did ultimately explain why I was able to snag the Business Class seats at the reduced mileage threshold. All of the seats around us were empty, and with so few people, we ended up spending a lot time chatting with one of the flight attendants.
As soon as we finished the extended lunch service, I helped Katherine set her seat up into a lie-flat bed. I literally tucked her in and she was asleep almost immediately, waking up a couple of hours before we landed at Dulles. I watched a few movies, slept a little myself, and forced myself to eat the second lunch they served before landing.
Thanks again to Global Entry, we did not have to wait in line at immigration and ended up cooling our heals waiting for our baggage to start coming out. With Murphy nowhere in sight, our bags were among the first out and we headed straight to Customs. I'd noted that I had alcohol to declare, as you're only allowed to bring in one bottle of wine duty-free. Global Entry again allowed us to bypass the long line. We were called forward and the agent asked what I had; I pointed to the wine carrier and told him what I had. Fully expecting to be sent over to duty claims, he looked both K and I up and down, then smiled and said, "Welcome home. You're good to go." An unexpected surprise.
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