The husband and I have radically different perspectives on some of the basics of traveling. If the ticket says to be at the airport two hours before flight time, I don't mind being there three hours before. That's what books are for, right? And the other people are there for me to watch, right? The husband believes he's timed it right if he walks from the car to the check-in counter, through security to the gate, and never has the time to sit down until he's on the plane. After 24 years of marriage, we try to compromise when traveling together. On the way to Cambodia, though, the husband had to admit that my way has its advantages, one of them being catching the intended flight.
Our Vietnam Airlines flight from Hanoi to Siem Reap, Cambodia was scheduled to leave at 4:55 p.m. Because the cab ride from the downtown hotel went faster than the usual, we ended up at the airport with more time than even I prefer. We were comfortably reading or otherwise killing time when they made the first boarding call at 4:25. We got into line. As we were standing there, about six or eight people back from giving up our boarding passes, they made the second ... and final ... boarding call, saying that people with tickets on that flight should get to the gate "immediately." We boarded the plane, sat down, and realized that the plane was pulling back from the gate a full 20 minutes before the scheduled departure time. At 4:55, we were in the air en route to Siem Reap, where we landed over 30 minutes before our scheduled time. Fortunately, our drivers were there to greet us, and all was right with the world. I would like to think that they knew that everyone with a reservation on that flight had checked in, but I don't know that for a fact. I just know that for one day anyway, my way was definitely the right way.