So, It Begins
We're currently taxiing toward our runway in Toronto. The last message from the flight deck went something like, "Well, folks. Uhhhh. The tower tells us we're number 14 for take off. Uhhhh. That would put our takeoff in about a half hour." Oh, yay. It looks like we may get to Denver just in time to miss our connection. I really hope not. I was looking forward to being rewarded for the added hassle of coming to Canada, by arriving on Maui in early afternoon for once.
What seemed like a good plan, has been slowly turning into a shit sandwich.
After a leisurely, traffic free drive from Buffalo to Toronto yesterday, we had a nice meal at a cool Asian buffet. We then relaxed in our hotel with a couple cocktails, until bedtime. Or what we perceived as bedtime. Our next door neighbors, not so much. They were apparently having a couple (or twenty) cocktails of their own. As is often the case, the more they drank, the louder they got. Calls from the front desk at midnight and one-thirty am, went unheeded as the drunkfest proceeded. I don't know how (Oh, yeah. Exhaustion) we fell asleep, but the five am alarm scared the crap out of us. The airport shuttle was on time at 6, and things were looking up. After going four miles in thirty minutes, we arrived at the airport. Now the fun.
I had already checked us in, got the electronic boarding passes and paid the baggage fees to save time. So, obviously we went directly to the baggage counter to check them. Wrong. "No, I'm sorry, you first have to stop at the kiosk and print your own baggage tags." Back to the kiosk. Back to the baggage counter. Bags checked, check. Through security with the throngs of other travelers. Another kiosk? This one checks your passport for the fourth time. On the declarations screen, it asks "Are you carrying any fruits, vegetables or livestock?" Hmm. Heidi has four apples and two bananas. Do we answer honestly, or try to sneak through Customs with our contraband fruit? Eh, let's not get caught and risk a delay. We'll just declare them, and get rid of it if we have to. Heidi's pass comes out of the kiosk with a big X through it. Uh, oh. "Oh, you have to go in this line." Feck. After waiting for a Customs agent, he instructed us to go through the double doors with the green arrows, and see agriculture. "But, we don't want to! Can we just throw them away?" "No, we don't have anywhere to put them, said the agent." At the doors, another passport kiosk. Fuck that. We pushed our way through the doors as the sign said. Our fruit then inspected, it was determined the bananas were ok, but the apples were a no go. Whatever.
We were finally headed to our gate, F98. There are 99 gates in this terminal. Guess where 98 is. The sign at the snack bar indicated it was a seven minute walk to gates 86 through 99. Finally, through the gate and headed onto the rainy, foggy tarmac. Another quarter mile. I wasn't going to have my first cocktail until the Denver-Maui flight. I think I'll get some Jameson for my coffee. As I finish writing this installment, we are at cruising altitude, and fifteen minutes ahead of where we thought we'd be. I'll keep you posted.
We landed on Maui on time at 2:30pm HST. After getting our bags, rental car, arriving at our condo and unpacking, it is now 5pm (11pm back home). We are contemplating a trip to the convenience store for a couple provisions before we run out of steam. Aloha for now.
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