The absurdly long travel day.
22 hours in total.
That much travel with so little sleep is a young person’s game. Oh well, it can’t really be avoided when you’re traveling from Iceland to the West Coast.
Started in Reykjavik and had a nice breakfast at the Guesthouse Aurora. Passed on the flea market and National Gallery because of time, but briefly met up with Martina and Joke at the Church (where they were going to an organ concert at noon).
Dragged our stuff downhill (which is much, much easier than going uphill) to the bus station to go back to Keflavik (where the international airport is), past Grindavik (where all the earthquakes and potential volcanic eruption are). Bought more lakrits and chocolate at the airport and did a little work before the flight. Yes, I wrote the first draft of another story while I was waiting. It occurred to me that a project called “Echoes of Iceland” needed a piece called Echoes, so I wrote it. It’s probably going to be the last piece in the book that should appear next year.
Amy and I were flying out on two separate flights. She was changing through Newark on Alaska Airlines and I was changing through JFK on JetBlue (and hoping they’d be better than they were on the trip over). My flight from Iceland left at about the same time, but they bussed us to a far-off gate than had us wait in a boiling holding area for about 20 minutes before we could board and I thought at one point I’d pass out.
Got into JFK and had to go through customs, recheck the bag, change terminals, and go back through Security (thankfully, I have TSA pre-check, which easily saved me 20 minutes on all that). My JetBlue flight was 45 minutes late taking off because they had to refuel so they could reroute us north to avoid turbulence. Spoiler alert: We didn’t avoid turbulence and were an hour late coming in. Also, even though the flight was only a third full, they wouldn’t let people move into open rows because they claimed the luggage underneath was being positioned to counterbalance the weight from our original assigned seats. This seems like complete B.S. to me, but my experiences with JetBlue have been awful on this trip.
Finally got to LAX a good hour late. Four bags came out at baggage claim, then nothing for 15 minutes. Finally, they announced that there was a jam and we’d have to go to another carousel. Okay, JetBlue, I get it. I have many other options when I fly and should have taken the Alaska option.
Originally, I was supposed to come in 15 minutes after Amy and we were going to wait and go back together, but when she saw how late we were, she went home, took a shower, then drove back to the airport and still had to wait around for 20 minutes while JetBlue attempted to deliver bags to their passengers.
Finally got home around 2:00 a.m. The cats were very happy to see both of us.