[this is an excerpt from my travel journal, dated 2/12/08]:
We just sat down on our flight from Miami to Bridetown. On the plane, they're playing a jazzed-up version of the song, "Me & Mrs. Jones" with paradise landscape photos scrolling across all the TVs. I hope that I am able to take some fantastic photos just like that on this trip. Just before takeoff, Brian and I had a brief conversation about passports, and how we'd both like to go to Cuba someday in the near future. [since this conversation, Fidel has resigned (but he's not dead); this could very well become a reality in the not-so-distant future.] It's hilarious, and amazing to me though that this trip has hardly gotten off the ground, and I"m already dreaming about where my next adventure will take me. I believe that this is the mark of bug-bitten traveler-- always seeking the next great trip, adventure, or destination.
I'm so glad that we're finally up in the air. At the Miami airport, I felt like we were never going to make our connection. In my brilliant planning, I only gave us 45 minutes to make the connection, and we had to go from one end of the terminal where we landed, to the transfer pods to make it to the opposite end of the furthest detached terminal. With the time crunch and the distance we had to go to get to our next gate, it was the sort of experience that would have likely given Andrea a panic attack. She hates airports, and after this experience, I can really relate to how and why she feels that way.
Needless to say, however, we made it with no problems, other than getting lost and turned around on the way, being greeted with a DC Metro-esque escalator situation (the down works fine, but the up is not functioning at all), and were literally running up the stairs (that IS what non-moving escalators are, after all), with our heavy coats, carry-on luggage, and the three shirts including thermals that I was wearing.
By the time we got there, I was practically wheezing, I was sweating myself half to death, and the burning in my thighs was really intense. Of course, we were greeted with a 15 minute delay once we got to our gate. "Whew." I almost thought that was going to be close. I was starved, so I took the time to get a cheese pizza for Brian and I to share. When I got back to our seats at the gate, I was incredibly aware of how warm I felt. I looked around and saw nearly everyone wearing sandals or flip flops.
I am inspired!
I have a fresh pedicure!
My feet are burning!
I stripped off my sneakers and socks and was elated by my foresight to pack some sandals in my carry on suitcase. Once I had those sandals on, my entire body temperature went down to "Aaaahhhhh."
We boarded the flight, I tapped my iPod, and was quickly entertained by my audiobook, Shantaram. I sat back, relaxed an enjoyed the excitement of what the next 5 days would bring.