The answer is yes. We’ve been traveling for a week and a half but mostly without free wi-fi. In Vancouver, I couldn’t figure out how to go on the hotel’s free internet using my computer. I know simple thing you say but somehow my past proven technique of signing in just didn’t work. Then with an initial internet fee of $8 with 40 cents a minute after that on board ship I opted out. I know my friends were waiting with baited breath to read about our adventure (so now it’s “catch-up” time).
I woke with the song “I’m leaving on a jet plane” echoing through my head
… so excited that we were on our way – another great adventure. Alaska, via Vancouver.
We sort of found out the hard way that what the airlines recommend, you need to abide by.
For those who know me, if I am supposed to be somewhere at a particular time you can rest assured I’ll be there. Late = 10 minutes early in my book. My husband on the other hand – aaaaahhh, not so much. He is always making fun of me and my preparing way ahead of time, like holding the Ezpass card up well before we are near the tollbooths. I do this because I hate fumbling for it the last minute. I don’t like how it makes me feel when I am rushed.
Being an experienced traveler, I knew (at least I thought I knew) that the airports are pretty much void of travelers before 6 am because airline agents aren’t manning the counters until 6. I’ve had to sit and wait when arriving the 2 hours before take off. (Always ok with me, Jene hates waiting and I certainly didn’t want to be fodder for Jene’s teasing me about being so early. I booked our car service to pick us up at 5:15 for the 7:25 am flight. We would be at the airport before 6 giving us 1-1/2 hours to get our boarding passes and go through security.
I won’t even go into the car service fiasco because we got to the airport a little past 6. There was a long line quequed for curbside check in so we head inside and I was floored by the site of a zillion people milling around in the lines for the kiosks. Don’t panic…. We raised our hands as instructed over the loud speaker because our flight was starting to board and we could be moved to the head of the line. (We were berated by the guy because he saw that we just arrived). At the kiosk, there’s problem, Pat’s middle initial is not on the reservation but is on the passport so minutes are ticking away and finally an agent comes to our rescue. Jene puts his bag on the scale – 47 pounds, followed by mine – no problem, Pat’s bag – 13 lbs over the 50 lb limit. The ticket agent suggested we transfer stuff to the carry on (Oh no we were going to be one of those people emptying stuff into the carry-on that I’ve made fun of). Pat decided she would just pay the upcharge – 100 friggin dollars. A second piece of luggage would have been $35. Yikes – a rip off but we were in too much of a hurry because the clock wasn’t stopping for us. Racing to the escalators we were directed to the other end of the terminal, where there was a line waiting to go up, Now back to the side we had come from across that floor and onto a longer line for security. It was after 7 and we were moving at a snails pace. Panic was all over my face, as we inched our way to the TSA agent checking passports and boarding passes. 7:10 and we still had to go through the security gate, shoes offs, computer out of it’s case we dump our bags on the conveyor belt and walk through the machine. Gate C95 all the way down at the end of the terminal we scurry. It was touch and go all the way but we boarded the plane with a few minutes to spare. Phew! We bit the bullet on that one. Rest assured, we will be at the Anchorage airport in the slotted 2 hour time span on the way home.
Settled into our seats, took off and arrived with no issues, went through customs and hopped on the shuttle bus to the free Sheraton Airport Hotel. Checked in, had lunch:
I decided on a foot long hotdog with gueryere cheese and pulled pork/French fries and a tall glass of ice water. Exhausted by the day already, we rested before heading out to famed Gastown. We took the subway, trying to make up some of the $100 luggage fee.
Meandering down the streets of Gastown – lined with trees, trendy restaurants, souvenir shops,, pan-handlers and a sprinkling of heroin addicts.
We splurged on dinner after waiting 40 minutes for an outside table. Vancouver is pricey like New York and the USD is not what it used to be worth in Canada. But we are on vacation and we are foodies. Pat dined on short ribs, I had a strawberry / avocado salad and Jene had peaches and prawns, we washed our meals down with cold beers. A micro brew infused with apples. Tasted more like a cider than a beer, which suited my palette.
At 10:30 we sank into our beds, appreciating the cloud-like softness of the mattress that absorbed our tired muscles.
My body wakes me up as the sun rises in spite of the fact that I didn’t fall asleep until about 2:30 EST. I will later regret that I didn’t stay in bed like Jene and I assume Pat. I’m all about “rise and shine, rise and shine”. Time for a second cup of coffee down at the café.