Hello El Paso

Sister observed it first, but being raised as we were, air travel is natural. Like a bus or a train to some.

I’ve flown Delta, United, and Continental, maybe two, three times each in the last decades. American, at, maybe a dozen overseas trips, plus one cheap, ill-conceived AA flight to West Texas. Virgin, once.

Southwest — call letters SWA — for years, in Austin, I was at the airport almost every month. Oftentimes, two or three times in a single month.

I earned (paid for by way of travel purchases) the upgraded status for a while. I’ve also stopped traveling as much as the economic collapse dictated.

At the close of the old millennia, Austin transformed the old, then recently shuttered, USAF base to a brand spanking new airport. Austin Mueller became Austin Bergstrom. From a certain trailer park in South Austin, it was equidistant. I had a dubious distinction, if the airport opened on time — it didn’t — of being scheduled to fly out of the old airport and return to the new one.

At lunch, just outside of SeaTac, along Puget Sound, the waitress spoke about growing up in Austin — her dad was stationed at Bergstrom, “That’s now the ‘new’ airport,” I hastily explained.

Whether I departed Dallas (Love Field), Austin (Meuller then Bergstrom), or San Antonio, headed west is a milk run for me.

Has been for years. Hasn’t changed.