So Shawana blames my bad travel karma and I blame hers but it's all kind of a moot point at this point 'cause we're married and together we are just gonna have to figure it out!! So everything started off well enough, got packed and off to the airport at 2 in the morning for our 5:30 flight. Josh dropped us off, we said our adios's and then headed towards the check in. We got checked in ok and after an apparent X-ray machine snaffu they got it all working and we were able to send off the bags to Madrid... we thought...
But blissfully unaware of the trials and tribulations that lay ahead we walked confidently into the line at security, passed through smoothly with no un-needed body scans and were at the gate in plenty of time. Flight to Phoenix passed with ease as did the flight to Philly. Sitting in Philly waiting for the plane I felt a slight disturbance in the force but passed it off as just a hint of nervous/excited energy of actually being able to spend time with my wife for the first time in 8 months.
So the flight to Madrid was good enough for a flight that takes you 8 and a half hours to complete. We had had this amazing luck of Bulkhead seating the entire time that we were traveling up to this time so i was nice to be able to kick our feet up on the wall and not have some 5'2" lady recline her seat into my legs because she needed the extra room. Was able to catch up on my movie viewing and watched 'The A-Team', 'Grown Ups', and most of 'Date Night' and Shawana got in 'Cyrus' before going to sleep(She says it is horrible so don't waste your time). So again no problems just a lot of traveling so beginning to feel a little tired and a little stinky from being on the move for 20 hours.
Entering Spain was also easy and cleared customs without an issue or even a word from the agent. I guess they can tell your terroristic intent through mind reading and we had no such ill-will directed at their homeland. We get to the baggage claim to pick up our bags and that twitch of nervousness returns. The fifth or sixth bag out the gate was our first bag which included all the toiletries, all of my clothes, and a couple of S's things. And then we waited.. and waited.... and waited...... and cursed......... and waited............ Alas the bag with all of S's clothes except for a bathing suit,(which by the way it's only been a high of 41 so not super important at the moment) her sneakers, a pair of jeans and a T-shirt went missing. Of course it was also the bag that we had the video camera in it as well.
Needless to say I was hoping that my first time really needing my spanish was going to be something like 'Dos cervecas por favor!'(Two Beers Please) not 'Donde esta mi F@$#ing bag!'(Where is my you can guess the rest) Walking over to the counter we searched for the baggage claim tickets to discover that the law student/smart one of the the relationship kept hers and the tree monkey/college dodging wanker threw his out as soon as he got off the plane in Phoenix. The conversation went better than expected, He spoke english a lot better than I spoke spanish so we were able to figure out what I needed, find the other bags number using the one ticket that we did have and then them take down the address to our hotel in Mallorca and say that it will be delivered as soon as it arrives.
We leave the lost baggage claim still with a good attitude, this stuff happens but we can get through this and it will still show up and all that other happy horse s#%t. Fast forward into the future till now and we still have no bag 2 days later. When we look up the baggage claim number online, the top says that the file is closed which means the bag has been found and shipped out to its destination, and the bottom says open which means they haven't found it yet and they are still searching. Neither one is too encouraging but hopefully tomorrow will be a good day for our bag to return home to us!
So we move on back to the arrivals part of the airport to re-check our 1 remaining bag and hope it makes it there because I don’t think we could have handled a 50% attrition rate on baggage at this point and time. We check in with Spanair at 10:15am and begin to sob when we realize that our flight does not leave until 5:40 that night. Between the travel, dealing with the lost bag, and having no research on what we should do in Madrid we decide to be lazy and sit at the airport and get some food and some sleep.
We find a little food court in the airport and I see that they have the 'VISA' symbol on their card swipey thing so we decide to find an ATM later and just press on with the card. After making all of our selecions of a bocadillo with jamon and queso(A baguette with Cheese and Ham) we get to the front of the line with food that actually looks good compared to the stuff that was freeze dried over 2 weeks ago. Shock and surprise the card does not work but the lady is nice enough to hold onto our tray until we return with Euros.
I'm getting bored writing all of this so you all must be getting bored reading it so to speed up the story a little bit, the airport is a smoke free airport except for these little cubicles that are located all around the airport, the next flight got delayed for 30 minutes to fix a 'technical difficulty', the seat backs were separated from the front of the seats by 7 inches no more and the baggage thankfully arrived in Palma.
So once we get in the car I had tried to think ahead and had directions printed up that went from the airport to our hotel approx. 15 km total distance. There are 11 steps in these directions and we made it to #4 before missing a turn somewhere. We got turned around by 1 way streets, parked cars blocking the intersection and the lack of anything that resembled a helpful map. We drove for 40 minutes in 1 area that we knew was on this map and labeled and I could not find us one time on the bloody map!
So we get close enough to see the hotel and wonder if we are ever going to get to the front desk. Even the directions we got from the hotel 200 m up the hill still lead us the wrong way but eventually we get lucky and wind up in front of what we thnk might be the hotel!! As I go in to check and see if we finally found it, Shawana goes to circle around. Unfortunately, the loop that she needed to take was all the way up and down the hill and ended up getting lost on the one way streets that led her into a residential area that she could not find herself out of. I on the other hand, started to wonder if she had been taken by the Mallorcan mob for crossing over turf lines. Finally she is able to make her way out of suburbia and back to the hotel where I am anxiously waiting her return.
Yikes right! If you are still reading this I am sorry that took so long but it's hard to cram 36 hours of travel car to hotel bed into a shorter post especially without leaving out any of the fun stuff! We will be updating daily hopefully so stay tuned for hopefully better days!!!