April 2007

Delta out of bankruptcy

by Jon Surmacz on April 30, 2007

Delta Air Lines emerged from bankruptcy early Monday, following a 19-month reorganization that saw it fight off a hostile takeover.

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pilot.gifArriving at Bullo River Station (a ranch back in the U.S.) is a step outside of the modern world. It is a step into the peace of open space, isolated tranquility and panoramic beauty with an uncovered history of thousands of years, surprising nature and unexpected camaraderie.

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The jewelry in the shop in Santorini was beautiful, and the couple from Florida was dazzled. Yes, the jewelry was expensive, but the shop was a member of Celebrity Cruises’ “Guaranteed Shopping Program” — or so the sign said. So Courtney Thompson and his wife plunked down $24,000 and returned to their ship, where they were in for a rude awakening.

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Koala.gifAdelaide with its tall buildings and bustling traffic was a dramatically different scene from Barossa and the mountains that border Adelaide to the north and east. After checking into the Adelaide Hilton, right in the center of the city on Victoria Square, we met our first local guide,

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Flight attendants at Northwest Airlines tentatively settled on pay cuts on Thursday, salvaging a potential $182 million share of the airline’s reorganization in exchange for the millions more they have given up.

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SeppeltBarrel.gifIt started raining at about 4 a.m. It is a nice gentle, soaking, steady rain. It has lasted all day and into the night. It is a sound that the Barossa Valley had not heard for far too long. The locals are all talking about it. They apologize for it. “Sorry mate,” they say, “We really need this.”

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Gasoline prices, already above $3 a gallon in some states, could charge higher this summer and hit $4 a gallon in some locations, according to one industry expert.

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Dwight Wolcczak and his wife miss their MAXJet Airways flight from New York to London. Catching the next plane costs them an additional $2,304 each, after the change fees and fare differentials are totaled up. Isn’t that too much? Or did the airline make a mistake?

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medals.jpgToday is the day Australia sets aside to honor their soldiers who fell in battle. I had a chance to sit through a high school convocation celebrating this day with a full orchestra and students singing. Finally, after an address to the class about the struggles of the diggers (soldiers in Aussie slang) during the various wars, a lone student playing an acoustic guitar sang a wrenchingly plaintive version of “The Band Played Waltzing Matilda.”

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Airline start-up Skybus announced Tuesday that it will launch service next month from its Columbus, Ohio, base, moving discount travel in the USA closer than ever to the bare-bones model pioneered by Europe’s popular Ryanair.

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