Monday, 15 August 2016

OTNTourLA - The Long Trek Home

After an amazing day sightseeing the area around Pereira, it was a very late night but my first flight wasn't until almost midday.

I met up with Tim for breakfast and then made my way to the airport. There isn't really a waiting area airside, just two boarding areas, so you have to wait till your flight is the next one to be called. The area landside was very busy with whole families seeing individuals off, and it was warm, very warm.

Luckily I didn't have to wait too long, just long enough to use up my last local money on sweets for the office. I joined the queue for security only to have one of my bags stopped. There was no English spoken but they seemed to think I had scissors. I did, a small pair, with blades 3cm long and round ended. These scissors have been around the world with me in my knitting bag, which I took up to help with travel stress. UK hand luggage rules which are based on global guidelines, say they are OK up to 6cm. I know other countries can have other rules, but they went through security in Bogota, the Colombia capital on the way in. I wasn't happy.

My flight was delayed about 20 minutes, which meant I had just under an hour to make my international connection in Bogota. I only asked once for instructions so that unlike the way in, I knew what I had to do.

The queues were phenomenal and I did ask once if I was in the right place and an Avianca person helpfully told me to run. The queue for passports was enormous and everyone was drought, and I even saw locals telling queue jumpers (and there was many) exactly how they felt. My blood pressure was rising but I got to the gate after they had starting boarding but I did get it.

Arrival at Miami was less fraught, or so I thought. I had chosen to spend a night in an airport hotel as the only option was again a quick connection and I just knew it was impossible in Miami. They have automated immigration in Miami and although I though I was OK, the picture tells a different story.

Eventually I got through, collected my luggage and waited, and waited for a hotel shuttle. After a quick meal I decided to have an early night.

The hotel did breakfast to order, but I was in no hurry so I waited 30 minutes behind one woman, who then ordered 7, yes SEVEN breakfasts. Finally it was my turn, and I asked for poached eggs, only to be told that despite the sign saying"'Eggs - anyway"  they only did fried or omelets!! 

I intended to spend the day getting ready for work, finishing bogs, writing things up etc, but the internet was not really good enough, so I just wrote my complaint letter instead!!

Anyway, British Airways gave me a much appreciated upgrade to Premium Economy and after a straight forward flight and a not too busy passport control I was back in London.

Return to Main OTNTourLA post

No comments: