Thursday, 14 April 2011

Travel Adventures, and Other Stories

Well, I am back in Cambridge! I will recap my travel adventures after I finish with our Vermont trip. I like chronological order.

Thus. Sunday morning in Middlebury. First of all, excellent breakfast. Possibly the best packaged yoghurt I've ever had?

Mom and I decided to go to church, but I had not packed for anything more than lazing around with Nana and PopPop. Lucky for me, Dad had brought three of Mom's dresses from the dry cleaner in Cleveland for her to take back to Atlanta. (Yeah, it's complicated). What this meant, however, was that I had a dress to wear! Not one I would have picked out for myself..but whatever. The only problem was footwear. I hadn't brought anything except converses and boots. So I went to church like this.

I looked like a crazy person. But I refused to go to church in jeans, so for some reason this seemed like an appropriate alternative. Fortunately, they still let me in.

Back at Nana and Poppop's house, I had lunch.

This bowl was one of... four or five.. The Ben & Jerry's making an appearance from the night before. Yes I did eat the entire pint. No not entirely on my own. But pretty much. It would have been wasted otherwise!!

Also set out a plate of leftover goodies. The Greek response to family gatherings..

After visiting for a while, we stuffed ourselves back in the car and drove back to Burlington.



Back at the airport, we headed out separate ways. While we were taxing in JFK, we saw this giant out the window.

It's hard to see in this photo (but you can click on it to make it bigger!) but this is an Airbus A380, biggest passenger jet in the world. Also amusing that here we were at JFK the day before one of these beasts would whack a little Delta plane (like ours!).

The highlight of the trip back was... Mum and I were upgraded!! On our flight from New York to Atlanta. It pays to be a frequent flier apparently!

Check out that leg room!


Mummy's meal. Nom.

And mine.

Just kidding! Mine, for real.

The whole flight was excellent. It was less than two hours, so I didn't really need to recline and sleep, but I put my feet up, reclined my seat and curled up with my book. There are worse ways to travel, I must say.

Also, a side note. I sat in the same seat on both my flights! I am probably the only person in the world who would find this noteworthy. Still, how often does that happen?

We headed back to Mom's apartment, with gummies for sustenance!

Also noteworthy: Sunday was the first day in a week I didn't cook/bake anything! Trying to wean myself off kitchen access. :( On the upside, I still have delicious adventures from last week to share! I left off with Thursday baking adventures. In addition to these whole-wehat fig newtons, I also made a version of beignets, baked, rather than fried. I'm not a big fan of greasy sugary things, so this recipe was appealing. They came out of the oven looking like yummy little rolls.

I just ate them like this, since I really dislike sugar, but they a look a lot better with a little powdered on top.

That evening, we met up with good friends from when we lived in Dayton, and tried a vaguely Spanish/Mexican/Southern tapas style place, which turned out to be pretty decent. Plus we got to sit outside. The South is good for some things.

Started with queso (YUM CHEESE).

A southern classic, shrimp and grits. Also delicious.


And another Southern staple, Fried Green Tomatoes. Good, but.. why? Why fry something that is already good?

Good night, with great company.

Friday was a short day, as Mom came home early from work to get us to the airport. Still, I couldn't resist the kitchen and made a second batch of muffins. Some had jam on the inside, a few I stuffed with blackberries, and three had peanut butter chips inside. :)

Right, now jumping back to this week. Monday was a pretty uneventful day. I took Mummy to work, ran 3.13 miles on the treadmill (yay!), and then ran a lot of errands for things to take back with me. I bought a lot of stuff.. Tea, cereal bars, pens, Peeps, gummies, Easter egg dye, grits (I know, so southern!), cereal, granola, etc etc. Too much.. I went to get Mummy from work and she took me on an exciting adventure!

For our last night, we decided to go for Mexican, something I find is completely lacking in England. I entrusted us to the internet, and we found a little hole-in-the-wall near the apartment that ended up being pretty decent.


On Tuesday morning, the travelling adventures began. Mom was flying to Florida for work, so we went to the airport together. We got the MARTA (the train) at 8AM. This was perfect for Mom's 10am flight. Not so perfect for my 7.15pm. No matter! Extra time with Mummy was good. We got there with no issues, and while Mom checked in and hit the gift shop, I tried to get on an earlier flight. After dealing with possibly the slowest Delta woman I've ever encountered, it was established that I could not get on an earlier plane without paying a lot. Fine. Then she starts looking through my passport, asking me about my return flight. I don't have one, since I bought this round trip ticket from London. She finds my student visa, which I let expire last year since I have a Greek passport and can move around/stay in the EU. She starts whispering worriedly with her colleagues, without actually asking me anything. Then finally one of them says, I'm sure she has it worked out, she must have citizenship or something. So I flash the Greek passport and all is well.

We head through security, find Mummy's gate, and I saw her safely onto her plane. (This is actually it! I know, it could be one of literally hundreds of Delta planes I saw that day..)

After saying goodbye, I settled in for a very long day. I started with Starbucks and Time magazine.

(An excellent cover story by the way. I really loved this photo series. Seriously powerful, check it out).

I got out my laptop (no free WiFi alas) and got some reading/notetaking done. I did a lot of terminal walking too! Went to another terminal for lunch at Au Bon Pain. Then walked to another for a mid-afternoon snack of frozen yoghurt! I was really looking forward to having some while in the states. This trend hasn't quite hit Cambridge yet.

I read, and read some more. And then read just a bit more. Around 4 I decided to head back to my gate. There, I (guess what) read some more. I kept myself sustained on a huge bag of grapes we picked up the night before, an apple Mummy had lovingly chopped up for me, and a microwave oatmeal cookie I'd made that morning. I also walked past a Ben & Jerry's, and, lo and behold, it was free cone day! So I had a second dessert.. I mean.. they were giving out free Ben & Jerry's!!

This is my 'predatory' face.

After what seemed like no time at all, it was time for my first leg to Boston! After a brief panic in the airport when I thought I would have exactly 11 minutes to make my connection (I actually had 50, it was fine), I got on the plane, got out my book, and settled in. Somehow I seem to always sit near the people that MUST put their seat back. We hadn't enough reached whatever altitude was required before he leaned back and squished my legs. Sigh. Legs have gotten used to it now though, and can contort quite effectively.

I was a little worried about getting my flight to London, but it was in the same terminal. A bit of quick speed walking brought me to the gate where people were still boarding. I got on and found myself with the two seats by the window to myself! Score. Again though, I had the crazy person behind me who kept tapping the bag of my seat. For a while, I was seriously freaked out. I mean.. who does that? An occasional bump I can understand, but a continual tapping? I decided eventually he must have been playing a game on the screen.. so I moved over to the window seat, where I wanted to sleep anyway. Soon after, the tapping began ON MY NEW SEAT. What?! I was creeped out. I leaned against the window rather than my seat and was soon asleep. But it was weird. I slept through pretty much the entire flight. I missed breakfast, and literally woke up as we hit the ground. Not a bad way to spent a flight.

Customs was easy (I like being an EU citizen :) ) and my bags came out quickly (I also like being a frequent flier!) and I settled down to wait for my coach. Only.. 3 and a half hours. Blah. By this point, I was a pro, so out of my book and did some more reading! Also snoozed a bit.

Coach ride to Cambridge was uneventful, but I got some nice(ish) pictures.

Overcast, obviously, but still pretty! It's also rather cold. Slightly unpleasant after Atlanta. I am all settled in now, and am back in my spot in the library! A long few months lie ahead..


Lee said... [Reply]

I loved it!!!you are such a good writer and funnyyyyyy!