Yesterday was the most challenging so far. Nothing happened that I didn't anticipate, and I handled everything that occurred without getting stressed. I'm grateful for the good nights sleep I had last night.
O-kay, here's a summary of yesterday. The day began in the very busy Vancouver Airport.
I was flying via Frontier Airlines Albuquerque (it's taken me months to learn how to correctly spell the name of this New Mexican town) was my final destination.
I was fore warned by the very knowledge man at Winnipeg's UN Luggage that each airline would have different rules. Flying Winnipeg to Vancouver my huge duffle bag was oversize and heavy and cost extra, but West Jet allowed it on the plane. Frontier Airlines weighed my duffle bag and told me it was 6 lbs. overweight not meaning I had to pay extra, meaning it couldn't go on the plane. The young man charged with the responsibility of weighing luggage suggested I put some of the things in the duffle bag into my other bags.
There I was, in the very busy Vancouver Airport taking socks, underwear and jeans out of my duffle bag and stuffing them into my computer and book bags. It worked, with an extra $100 (American, I'm sure) I would be able to board the plane
Next came customs, customs officials used hand signals and kept say, "Keep moving, keep moving." The staff were efficient, us passengers were not.
The trip from Vancouver to Denver took 2 1/2 hours and Frontier, a low cost American airline, charged for everything. I paid for nothing I spent the time reading.
I had a six hour layover in Denver. I thought I would take a trip to downtown Denver. It didn't work out. I'm traveling on the cheap. I would have taken a bus. There are no buses only cabs taking the 35 mile, one way trip to downtown Denver.
Do you remember the movie 1984 where big brother kept announcing rules. That's what American airports are like. If I were the mayor of Denver I wouldn't welcome people to Denver on the same loud speaker that announces the names of people who must board right away or the plane will leave without them, and announces that the airport is on yellow alert and passengers are to be on the alert for suspicious people and unattended luggage. (How does anyone recognize a suspicious person? - it's 1984 in 2008 - I'm telling ya)
After six hours sitting around a frantically paced Denver hub I board the plane headed for Albuquerque, which is a short jump from Denver.
My Avis rent a car person was very helpful. I'm driving a Chevy Cobalt. Generally I can lift my duffle bag into vehicles. Not this time, I tried and tried, the trunk was about 2 inches too high. When I fell on the but in the car rental parking lot I decided to unpack and collapse the bag.
There I was at about midnight unpacking and collapsing my bag. I knew that might happen, and it did.
I drove out of Albuquerque taking instructions from my rented GPS. I'm staying at a very inexpensive Super 8. The thing is, the desk clerk couldn't get my Visa Card to work and didn't seem to understand how to handle a chip protected Visa.
And so, at 1 a.m. in a strange town I walked across the street to use an ATM. Oh well, I needed some American cash anyway.
This morning I'm delight to hear the housekeeping staff talking Spanish. Unfortunately I don't have the nerve to practice my Spanish with them, since the speak English I don't need to. When I need to I won't have a choice but to speak Spanish.
I've applied for and I'm being consider for a position in a small town in the Mexican state of Oaxaca. I had plenty of time, while sitting in the Denver airport, to complete the questionaire that was sent to me.
Long day, long post. I've got all my clothes organized for the next week. I'm off now to explore New Mexico - "The Enchanted State"