After my arrival from SJO I had a little over 1 hr for my connecting flight but decided to go straight to my gate instead of spending time at the Copa Club because as a U.S. destined flight I knew that there will be a secondary security screening right at the gate. It's a good thing that I arrived at the gate with plenty of time. As luck would have it, right before my turn to place my bags on the x-ray belt the machine temporarily broke down and the agent had to do a manual check of all bags resulting in a long back up. PTY can be a mess sometimes and the present terminal is just ugly. The new terminal would be such a huge improvement.
The gate area was crowded with people everywhere and hardly any empty seats. I stood by the counter and within minutes the gate agent started the boarding process. I made my way to the scanner and the gate agent wished me a pleasant trip. On my way to the plane I took the opportunity to snap some shots.
My plane at the gate.
Special livery next door.
As I step inside the plane I am greeted by a FA and my neighbor is already settled on her throne. i refrained from taking any pics of the seat or the cabin since there were people everywhere and Ms. Provocative next to me was dressed in a way that her assets were highlighted if you know what I mean. God forbid if I take a pic of my seat or the cabin and she thinks that she is the object of attention. The thought of being escorted out of the plane just made me shudder. However i noticed that during boarding some male pax smiled at her and she just looked to the side without any acknowledgement. Human interaction can be fascinating!. Anyways leg room in the bulkhead was good and there was already an amenity kit in the seat pocket. Too bad that it is the same old style.
Earphones that were collected before arrival. Is it worth the effort to collect this?
Pre-dept. drinks were offered but I skipped that. Eventually the door closed and we taxied out to the runway.
As soon as we leveled off the dinner service commenced. There were no menus distributed on today's flight. I don't know if this was an exception or a new cost cutting measure, but it is always nice to have a description of your meals before being asked. The FA was efficient and courteous and with a smile advised me that the choices were fish with rice OR beef with vegetables. That was not very descriptive, was it? Maybe I should I asked to see the dishes. Then I will really be a "DYKWIA" (Do You Know Who I Am) obnoxious self entitled prick. Better not ignite the wrath of those who serve me. You never know if they will add an extra enhancement to your drink. :P I chose the fish and then he asked for either Cesar dressing OR vinaigrette on the salad. I like creamy dressings so I had the Cesar.
Drink with nuts to start service. I asked for tomato juice and a glass of water but the FA actually gave me Bloody Mary mix.
On long haul dinner flights CM serves soup with salad before the meal. Too bad that the presentation is not the most "refined". The tomato theme continues with a tomato bisque. Looks like soup "à la BOOM".
There was already a soft roll on the tray when the dish was delivered. How efficient! :P
Main dish - That is one simple looking dish for J. Literally a piece of grilled fish with rice and some scattered vegetables as an afterthought. At least Nechus' fish in MVD looked better than this. For those who have missed it his FR is here. He's an excellent writer. ;)
So i closed my eyes with the first bite and pretended that I was savoring "poisson à la meunière". Imagination is a powerful tool.
After that satisfying gastronomical feast (I had to crank up my imagination quite a bit) it was time to end it with a sweet note. From past experiences, I was expecting a sundae cart service on dinner flights in J. Apparently things have changed slightly. I was offered a choice between cake OR ice cream sundae on a tray. I took the cake and it consisted of a chocolate and cheesecake pair. Not bad but the portions were a bit stingy (small). I then called the FA and asked if there were any leftover ice creams. He said that he was not done with dessert service yet but will get back to me. Minutes later he brought me the ice cream and a selection of chocolate or caramel syrup in a container (à la McDonald's). I guess they no longer prepare the sundae with the sauces from a cart and top it with crushed peanuts.
Ice cream sundae.
I ordered a cup of green tea to warm the spoon and use it on the ball of ice cream in case this was hard as a brick. Thankfully that was not the case. By the way, CM has green tea but AV does not. AV should take notes.
A bottle of water was delivered a bit later after the conclusion of the meal service. The IFE had a few movies but it was a bit limited and nothing really caught my eyes. I settled for a period British film about love and inheritance.
About 2 hrs. before arrival the lights were turned on and the snack service was delivered. I thought this was a bit too early. I think it is far more preferable to ask discreetly to those who were awake if they wanted to partake in the snack.
Some pax were awaken for this?
We landed 3 min. earlier in SFO and since I was feeling antisocial I decided to take a taxi to my place instead of Uber shared services. Uber would have been USD 10.20 and the taxi ended up being USD 21. In the future I would try to be "friendlier" after arriving from a flight.
Panamá City - PTY
San Francisco - SFO
The flight was on time and sitting in a bulkhead window seat gave me more flexibility to get in and out without really disturbing my neighbor. Also I had my choice of meals assured being in the front.
I hope the lack of menu was a one off experience instead of a cost cutting drive. Catering on CM is not the best but I appreciate that they try to serve a meal and snack on North American flights. Also having a choice of dressings, main dish and dessert is a plus.
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