Is there anything quite so depressing as coming home from a vacation?? Well, yes, how about coming home from a vacation spot where it is sunny and warm every day to a place where you have to wear a COAT?!!? I walked out of Dulles airport on Monday evening, got a blast of cold air, and very nearly turned around, walked back in – credit card in hand – and bought 2 tickets back to sanity. Why not? We were already packed! What is going on up here? It’s nearly mid-April, and this morning it wasn’t even 30 degrees outside. I know winter had a late start, but enough is enough already. Where is spring??
I will now depress myself even more by dedicating the next couple of blogs to our vacation adventures.
Day 1: The Departure
When we left our house last Tuesday, April 3rd, it was a fairly sunny day, with temperatures in the 50’s. My mother drove us from our home in Elkridge, Maryland down to Dulles International Airport in Somewhere, Virginia. I made a mental note at that time to never, ever, ask my mother to drive us anywhere again. Ever. (She’s leaving for Florida herself tomorrow, so hopefully by the time she gets back on the 26th she’ll have forgotten that she wants to hit me after reading this…) She has a self-professed dislike of driving on highways, so when you pair that with an abysmal sense of direction and the constant griping between her and my stepfather over which lane she should be in…let’s just say, by the time we hit the American Legion Bridge, I was ready to just get out and walk the rest of the way!
We got to the airport at around 11:15am for a 1:30pm flight. It took 5 minutes to check our luggage with the skycap, I had printed our boarding passes from home, so we bypassed the check-in counter, and all of 47 seconds to get through security. (Megan was extremely worried that her braces would set off the alarms, but the guard told her, “Just keep your mouth closed and don’t sing, and you’ll be fine.” lol) This left us with, oh, a good 2 hours to kill before our flight. We rode the big bus over to our terminal, got some doughnuts for a late breakfast, and sat down to wait.
We managed to get a row to ourselves towards the back of the plane, despite Southwest’s “free-for-all” method of boarding. They apparently don’t believe in assigning seats, just assigning you to one of 3 boarding groups. The preflight speech was pretty interesting – you gotta love a flight crew with a sense of humor! Here are some of the highlights:
- “If at any time during the flight you are dissatisfied with our service, there are 8 exits conveniently located throughout the plane…”
- “For those of you traveling with small children today…sorry. What *were* you thinking?”
- “So sit back, relax – or lean forward and be tense, it’s up to you – and enjoy the flight.”
Our take-off was uneventful (i.e. we didn’t crash!), and when the pilot made the “it’s ok to use electronics now” announcement, Megan had her CD player halfway out of her bag before he finished the sentence. You can’t have a flight without Evanescence, of course. Everyone knows that! I took a page from her book and got out my mp3 player. I tried not to let the fact that “Ironic” by Alanis Morrisette was the first song to come up in the random sequence.
He packed his suitcase, kissed his kids goodbye
He waited his whole damned life to take that flight
And as the plane crashed down, he thought, “Well isn’t this nice?”
And isn’t it ironic…don’t you think?
As soon as that verse began and I realized where it was headed, I skipped to the next song.
The rest of the flight went pretty smoothly – as smoothly as it can when one person has to hold a large metal object full of people in the air with the power of their mind for two hours, anyway – and by 4:30pm we were in Orlando, Florida.
One cobalt blue Chevy Cobalt and an hours’ drive later, we were in Cape Canaveral.
I immediately headed out to the balcony of the third floor oceanfront condo to take some pictures of the view:
We spent the rest of the evening just settling in. After unpacking, we went to the grocery store to stock up for the week, then watched a little tv before turning in early. The moon was huge and red and full as it rose over the ocean, and I enjoyed watching it through the open balcony door from my bed. It didn’t occur to me to get out the camera and try to take pictures until the next night.
Tune in tomorrow for Day 2.