Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Butterfly Kisses & Flights to China

I was driving to my conference yesterday and there were literally hundreds of Monarch Butterflies fluttering around. I stopped counting at 106. And that was within about 5 miles of driving. I was stopped at a stop light and 32 of them flew by during the time the light was red! They are so beautiful. I love watching them flutter around! Sad part....there were so many of them flying around that I killed about 6 of them on the way to my conference on my windshield. One of them got stuck in my windshield wipers for about 10 seconds. I almost cried. It was so sad. I really almost cried! Their wings are so bright orange. It was so beautiful to watch them all.

Take time to watch nature. You will be amazed. Brought a smile to my day.

Four U.S. carriers battle for lucrative non-stop China route
By Marilyn Adams, USA TODAY Posted 9/24/2006 7:31 PM ET
Four U.S. airlines this week are intensifying a contest to open the next non-stop route to China, the world's hottest growth market.
On Monday, American, Continental, Northwest and United airlines will submit briefs to the U.S. Department of Transportation to boost their bids for the one China route to be approved this year.
The DOT decision is expected to give an economic boost to one of the four U.S. metro areas that would be linked to China by the new air service: Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Washington, D.C., or New York City. Of the four, only the New York area now has a non-stop link to China.
The DOT is charged with choosing a route that will best serve the public interest. But that hasn't stopped the airlines from waging intense public lobbying campaigns to try to influence the decision.
Even American Airlines lobbyist Will Ris calls the combined noise level "a little bit out of proportion."
American and United Airlines have launched special websites that let the public sign petitions to the DOT.
All of them have mobilized big-name supporters. United has signed up eight former U.S. trade representatives and former Federal Aviation Administration chief Jane Garvey to push service between Washington and Beijing.
American on Monday will announce it has dozens of members of Congress on its side. Northwest is also in the fray.
Houston-based Continental, which wants to fly from its hub at Newark Liberty Airport to Shanghai, held a news conference this month in New York's Chinatown to build support.
Continental argues New York and Shanghai are the most populous cities in the two nations not linked by non-stop service. Continental's proposed flights would "conveniently link the two largest business centers," says spokeswoman Julie King.
Continental won't be able to make that argument for long. Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines announced last week it plans Shanghai-New York non-stops starting Dec. 8.
Mainland China, the USA's top Asian trading partner, is seeing double-digit annual growth rates in passenger counts, and air cargo shipments are growing nearly as fast.
In 2008, China will host the Summer Olympics in Beijing. The Chinese government projects air traffic volume there will double by 2010.
"China's aviation system is expanding faster than anyone else's," says Henry Steingass, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency's top Asia officer.
Because China restricts flights from abroad, four U.S. carriers today fly non-stop to China from just three cities: New York, Chicago and San Francisco.
American argues that its proposed Dallas/Fort Worth service would open the first gateway to China from the U.S. South. United argues that Washington should be linked to Beijing to bring the two nations' capitals closer together.


Kathy and Joel said...

INteresting! I saw a monarch today while we were in Phys. Ed. and I pointed it out to my kids. It is very important to take time to wonder at the beauty of nature.

Ron said...

It would be great to fly with Continental, they are awesome.

Valeri said...

Go Continental!!! My brother works for them!! We always have awesome service with them when we fly to Europe. I hope they get the D.C. flight! That's only a few hours from where we live.

Doris & Dan Clark said...

That must have been a wondrous site!

Nature at its best. Then humans get in the way...sheesh!

Keep smilin!