This morning I woke up and wanted to eat some breakfast before heading to the airport – turns out our hotel didn’t have breakfast (even slummy hotels have breakfast, and this wasn’t a slummy hotel!). I had to wait about 30 minutes for the shuttle, but then was dropped off right by ticketing.
There were a couple other people from my canceled flight yesterday, they were having a rough time – their bags were all over! They were apparently in Birmingham, AL – you should ALWAYS have a change of underpanties (haha) and a toothbrush in your backpack or purse if you check your bags. Anyway, turns out we had to redo our covid test/approval paperwork. I barely made it under the wire – though I did have to point to the ticketing agent that my test was done at 2:34 PM and not 2:34 AM…..
Anyway, after my paperwork I headed to TSA precheck and walked right through. I then went to the gate. I was looking for a Dunkin Donuts, but it was the opposite direction as my gate. Turns out, there was a Panera Bread right at my gate – so lets talk about a morning win!! Already better than yesterday!
Our flight was on time and I had a nice nap on that flight.
When I landed in the horrible Miami Dade airport – I noticed that the drunk girl had made it on our flight and was in the same clothes as yesterday (even though she had two bags with her??). Anyway, I headed to the closest Admirals Club to enjoy some more cheese and grapes! Of course I did have to add a Cherry Sprite Zero in there and some cookies! I watched some Bosch, check on some work emails and then downloaded a few new episodes for the flight.
I had forgotten to write in my One Question a Day journal, so I did that and then headed to my gate. I decided to walk to 30 gates, instead of taking the tram. Sounded like a much better idea than it actually was – it was a LONG way with a duffel bag!
I was starting to get worried about an on time departure – the tropical storm was headed our way and if we missed our take off slot, we would be screwed for hours. Thankfully, everyone boarded in a timely manner and to much of my delight, my row was EMPTY! So not only did I get a row to myself, the flight also took off on time! Woohoo!!
And now, I am in the air. After enjoying a dinner of vodka sauce and pasta, with a 3 piece of lettuce salad, cheese and crackers and cranberry juice. We have about 6 hours left of the flight, and I am just so happy to be back on the road. Nervous for what Europe will be like with this Covid crap – but excited for the world to be open to me again.
It should be noted….one should not eat vodka sauce when they have acid reflux. I barely slept on the flight – each time I fell asleep I was startled awake with acid reflux. Made for a long flight. I ended up taking all my tums I had brought for the whole trip (like 6).
Once I got off the plane we had to walk like a MILE to get to customs. After customs we had to ride a 5 minute tram to another part of the airport – then go through security. Security of course here is all automated. Rarely do they even open your bag if they think there is some sort of contraband. The person manning the Xray machine is remote. The person who verifies stands at the end of the bin collector and uses 3D imagery to verify what is in your bag. Water was tagged, but its not contraband, so off it went. That’s right folks WATER ISNT CONTRABAND! Anyway, on my way out of their security area I noticed a bright yellow version of their x-ray stuff. Turns out, they have a kid friendly line. Anyone with kids is encouraged to use that area, its bright has pictures on the wall and the x-ray machine. Still no one has checked my Covid 19 paperwork – maybe they will when I take off from here?
Anyway, after a 25 minute voyage, I made it to the right part of the terminal and immediately headed to the lounge. Lounges that are NOT owned by American companies are so much more luxurious. I was able to get breakfast, drink some water and relax. I then noticed they had lockers – HOW COOL!! So I decided to use a locker to hold my bags while I go find some European Tums. Turns out though, these lockers are cooler than I could imagine. Need to charge something while you walk around? They have an outlet in the locker!!
Im heading over to my gate shortly – looking forward to meeting up with Chris at hour hotel in a few hours!!
Well, just my luck – I did not get out of Madrid unscathed. My plane had a loose screw, literally, in the engine there was a loose screw. So, instead of canceling the flight, they found us another plane 10 gates down. So off the plane we went, walked 10 gates over and boarded AGAIN.
We ended up being about 2 hours later than our originally scheduled arrival. Somehow I never went through customs here. I followed signs for exit and not customs, on purpose. So I hailed a taxi and headed to the hotel.
Chris was still out exploring, and was going to meet me at the hotel about 45 minutes after I arrived. I showered, changed and walked down to the water before coming back to meet him in the room. However, his phone was dying and he wasnt responding. I waited for a bit in the room, then decided to go get a big gallon of water and then read in the square outside the hotel.
Chris finally came about an hour later. Why might you ask? He got on the wrong train, to no fault of his own. The trains are not labeled in English so he guessed at which one would get him back here. He ended up in a taxi.
We game planned in the room for a bit, then headed off to find the big church in town. We went to the church I had found earlier. It was not the church we were looking for, so we headed to the elevator to nowhere. Ok thats not really its name, but it basically just stands in the middle of this staircase and takes you up about 6 flights of stairs so you can go and see the Carmo Convent. Due to Covid 19, this elevator wasnt in operation. So, we walked up and around.
After checking out the Carmo Convent (which was majorly damaged (almost destroyed) in 1755). It had some cool pieces in the museum portion, including two mummies. It should be noted that the museum had little to nothing to do with the actual Convent, and more to do with how archiology helped shape the city.
After the Convent we decided to head back down the hill and get some dinner. We stopped at an Italian restaurant. We ended up splitting a quartro formagi pizza and pesto gnocchi. We made good life choices.
After relaxing a bit after dinner, we headed to Saint Jorge castle. It was a HIKE to get there, Straight up hills BOTH WAYS. Ok it wasnt that dramatic, but it was a toughie. It was cool to be able to see the city from such a high vantage point and check out the castle. It felt very authentic to me, with the columns, bow and arrow holes and the attitude.
After St Jorge Castle, we headed back down the hill to find some gelato. I got a Kinder Bueno and Chris got a caramel. As always, extra tasty. We hit the grocery store on the way back. Got some Fanta in a can, snacks and water.
Tomorrow is another busy day, that does NOT include me getting on a plane! Woohoo!!