15 September 2010

Spain at last!

Well this trip has been quite an interesting one so far. Pretty much everything has gone right, which is wonderful! I didn’t miss any flights or get held up anywhere strange and now I am finally on my last leg of the trip…the bus ride to Vitoria. I’m still four hours away from my future home, but that seems like nothing after traveling for about 20 hours straight.

I guess I should start with my flight from Denver to Boston, it was fine and took just over three hours, I believe. The only problem with it was the guy sitting behind me. Apparently he recently had knee replacement surgery on both of his knees, so before I even sit down, he peeks over the seat and asks me if I could not recline my chair during the flight because of his knees. Which is fine, of course, but he was an overweight guy to begin with and I don’t know if it was because of that or his knees, but for the duration of the flight, he was grabbing the back of my chair and using it to hold himself up…not the most comfortable for me, but I didn’t want to say anything since he recently had surgery. At the end of the flight, the lady across the aisle from me told me I should complain to the airline and try to get reimbursed for the flight. I honestly think she was more annoyed by the guy than I was.

Then I was in Boston Logan Airport and to get to the international terminal from the domestic, you have to walk through all these small damp corridors that look like a mix between an old swimming pool house and a high school built in the 70’s, kinda creepy. When I finally found the line for security, it was wrapped all the way around the inside of the building. It was a good thing I had a couple hours before my flight, cause I waited in security for at least an hour with a guy in front of me who kept looking back at me like I smelled bad…and maybe I did. So, needless to say, Boston was busy, if you ever take a flight out of there, allot yourself a good chunk of time.

My flight from Boston to Dublin was rather empty. There were a lot of empty chairs, including the one next to me, which was nice cause it gave me a little more leg-room. The flight was about five and a half hours, shorter than I expected and I didn’t sleep a wink. I tried for about an hour and then went back to watching movies. When we landed in Dublin – this is where the fun begins – I had just about an hour to make my connecting flight to Madrid. Unfortunately, I was in the back part of the plane, so just getting into the terminal took a while and then unexpectedly, I had to go through customs. I thought I was only going to have to do that in Madrid, so I started to get a little panicky. Luckly, the girl behind me, who was college-aged I guess, was on the same flight as me, so we found the shortest line and then rushed through security, again…I mean, we just got off an airplane, what could we have picked up in the minute walking down the hall?...and then raced through the airport to our gate. And when I say raced, I mean, we ran. We dodged in and out of people and got dirty looks from businessmen, but we made our flight about two minutes before they closed the doors. Thank goodness! Cause I know there were other people who were coming from Boston who were suppose to be on our flight and they missed it. So, after my heart stopped racing, I settled in for a nap and pretty much slept for the whole two and a half hours.

In Madrid, everything went smoothly, the baggage claim was a zoo and the bathrooms where horrible, but the information lady was really nice and told me the bus to take to get to the bus station where I could connect to Vitoria. It all worked well, but everyone spoke to me in English, even if I tried to speak Spanish to them…I guess I’m an obvious American. Which seems strange to me because while I was waiting in the bus station, for two hours, I kept trying to figure out where people were from without hearing them speak at first and I was wrong pretty much every time. Oh well.

Now that I’m on the bus, I never got to see much of Madrid expect what was on the highway, Spain looks kind of like a mixture between Colorado, New Mexico and maybe Kansas as far as landscape goes. Their mountains look about like the foothills, it seems pretty dry here, and there seems to be a lot of farm land, but there are lots of trees and I noticed from the little I could see out of the airplane window, that a lot of the trees are planted in organized patterns.

It’s all very interesting and beautiful. Spanish is overwhelming already and I haven’t even had to speak very much of it, but hopefully it will be better once I am more rested. I’m excited to get to Vitoria and will write again soon.

P.S. – My first meal in Spain was provided by the bus…a packaged sandwich. haha

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