Letter from America used to be a radio program I sometimes listened to on the BBC World Service when I was much younger. Since I’m currently in the U.S. I’ll write my own letters from America on my blog and perhaps I’ll even manage to add a podcast, if everything works out right. (And if I find out where I can host the podcast.) But I don’t want to promise too much…
I had booked a Lufthansa flight, because that was the only convenient direct flight to Houston, and I didn’t want to stop over in the U.S., because then you have to get your baggage and carry it around before you can get to the connecting flight. I used to think that Lufthansa is one of the safest and more comfortable airlines, but the old Airbus 340 looked as if Lufthansa was based in the Second World, or perhaps that is just a sign of the economic crisis in Germany. On-board food, wine and entertaining were likewise second-worldish. After goulash for lunch and chopped beef for supper even a stubborn carnivore will consider vegetarianism.
The US immigration procedure took less time than I thought and was quite unproblematic, although I don’t really like the idea that they took my fingerprints and a picture. Chris, my host from Houston, wanted to pick me up at the “passenger & baggage pick-up point” in front of the airport. That is some sort of tunnel where car-drivers drive through looking for the people they want to meet. You are only allowed to stop in order to pick someone up, so all the cars are constantly moving around and everybody has to inhale the exhaust fumes. A nice place to be! Afterwards we went to a really good Japanese restaurant with the unsurprising name Nippon. I really liked the food and I was hungry enough.
We spent the evening at home (I was tired enough due to my jet lag) and saw some television series classics: Sex and the City (“Attack of the 5’10″ Woman”), Will and Grace (which I hadn’t seen before, episode: “Women and children first”) and Seinfeld. The last one was particularly funny: The episode called “The Betrayal” is shown backwards, i.e. it starts with the ending and then goes back scene after scene until the beginning of the story.