For a first real post this is going to seem a bit unusual. But I have some real time to kill and stories to tell. If anyone reading this learns something, then I consider it time well spent.
Travel days are always met with a certain amount of anxiety. Trying to wrestle timing of things personally with packing and doing what is necessary to get to the airport....just tough for anyone I imagine.
Travel to Atlanta was pretty smooth for all of us.....I think with the exception of Rob. Do you see Rob in the picture above? If you can't see Rob then you are reading the wrong blog. He's the guy that is a whole head taller than Al, standing in front of the bus.
So we get into Atlanta; need to make our way from the domestic terminals to the international. We take one of those monorail trains. Rob's backpack is slipping ever so slightly off his shoulder. He attempts one of those little jump-shuffles that we all do to adjust a pack....smacks his head, full force, on the CEILING. Standing right next to him, I honestly felt like I could feel his pain as well as the train shift a bit. Al," I hate it when that happens to me."
After some snacks and time to pass, we make our way to the gate. As we are boarding they did one last check of passports. Mine, somehow did not pass mustard. (I know...it's MUSTER. I just like it the other way) It doesn't scan in the computer. One of the corners is a bit torn. The attendant immediately pulled it and called for a supervisor. I was a no-go. They could not risk it, they said. There would be large fines if I got down there and got rejected. My heart sank. Fight or flight started to set in. My friends were gather just beyond the rope. The look on everyone's faces was priceless....something like...if he's not going, we're not going...puppies that lost their friends. ....hey, what about our friend. Alas, it was not to be.
It is hard to put into words the feelings and emotions that have waved through me in the last 24hrs. So much work to do. So much work that has been done. How foolish I didn't update my passport. Can't you see I am a good person trying to do a good thing...just let me go. Helpless.
This morning I woke with a feeling that combined Planes Trains and Automobiles with Groundhog Day. My room looked like Del Griffith had been there selling shower curtain rings, complete with a few empty bottles of single serve rum and Phil the weatherman waking up to a living hell of, what do I do now.
Fortunately for me the hotel is hosting some sort of Southern Hunny Boo Boo beauty pageant. That halls and elevator are overrun with little blond, big haired, blue eyed beauty's. They use these funny little beach carts to pull some little girls and all their accoutrements. One little girl got on me elevator with her mom. She was in her cart and carrying 2 other optional blond wigs. I said hello....and oh....is one of those for ME?...as I politely tipped my hat . ;-). What song are we singing?....she'll be fine.
I moved forward in 2 directions today. 1) scheduled an appointment with the local passport office for tomorrow. And 2) went back to the airport to make one final plea to let me go. I was so close. I was nearly holding court with 3 other "Red Coats" as they're known....not sure if that is a good thing....they all agreed that my passport was not in terrible shape. Still, they maintained that they could not control what would happen in Peru. "They could just send you right back....and still fine us heavily," one of them said.
Yes, for those of you that have been following us for years, it is quite ironic that the boxes are in Peru with my friends...and I am NOT.
Cross your fingers for me tomorrow.