Saturday, 2020 March 21
I slept much better tonight than I did the night before, due both to my knees no longer bothering me as well as general fatigue. We got up, showered and dressed, and ordered room service. We had the same server as last night; I hope he didn't have to work all night.
It was clear that they were running out of things - Krista got a toasted hamburger bun instead of a bagel, which both amused and annoyed her. I just ordered the continental breakfast again; the fruit remained excellent.
The seas were high and rough again, and it was very gray. There were crabs all over our deck, so we spent some time watching them. I'm not sure why we were both so amused by them, but we were.
About 0830 we called the bell service and asked to have a cart brought over. It showed up quickly, but was not driven by Moises. We loaded up and headed to the lobby. Checkout was quick and painless, and then we just sat and waited for our ride (which was due at 0900). The lobby was very quiet, but it still seemed to be fully staffed.
The van arrived right on time; it was a little weird as it was an Expedia van, but apparently they also partner with Blue Travel Services so it's the same company.
The ride to the airport was uneventful. The Delta desk wasn't open yet but there was a short line, so we joined it. I went to one of the machines and was finally able to check in; I don't know why they were so insistent that I verify my credit card, but once I did that everything went as normal.
We probably stood in line for an hour or so before the Delta counter opened. They had quite an elaborate process; they set up a bunch of lanes (including having the entire line slide about six feet to the left), they passed out staplers to everyone, etc. I'm sure it all makes sense somehow, but it probably took a half-hour from the time we first saw Delta employees until they started checking us in.
We saw the couple from Kansas (that we had met during the Santo Domingo tour on Wednesday). They were not originally on a Delta flight, but their airline had canceled their return trip and they had to rebook. I'm glad they were able to get that sorted.
Once we dropped off our bags we walked over and passed through Dominican security and customs; this was pretty typical, and moved quickly. Then we were in the terminal and had a couple hours to kill.
Mostly we read and watched the people; it was quite busy. We also bought some sodas.
Boarding went smoothly. Krista and I hadn't been able to get seats together, but that was fine. We were both on the aisle, I was in 3B and she was in 4C (I think). The flight was uneventful. They served a light lunch, which I wolfed down; had I thought it through, I would have had a larger breakfast because lunch wasn't served until probably 1500.
We landed in Atlanta about 20 minutes ahead of schedule; this was good, as we didn't know what to expect in terms of clearing customs and still making our connecting flight. Things got off to a bit of a rough start when the family sitting in front of Krista managed to get in our way every step of the way to customs. Luckily once we got past them things went perfectly. We both have Global Entry so we were scanned, got our receipts, handed them to a very bored-looking agent who waved us through, and we were on our way.
Next was collecting our luggage. It took a while for it to start coming out, and then our bags took a while longer to show up. Once we had them we walked right through customs and immediately dropped them off again.
Then there was one more security line. This also moved quickly. Then it was a short walk to catch a train, and about five stops later we were in A terminal. One more decent walk and we were at our gate. It was full so we sat across the hall.
Once I had cell reception again, I started getting a bunch of text messages and voice mails. The voice mails were generally just nuisance calls but the text messages were from some of my friends back in Michigan reaching out to find out how my Dad was doing. I really appreciate the thought.
Boarding the Seattle flight was chaotic. They allowed military personnel to board first; there was a lot there, I'm not sure why, and this took so long that other random people just started getting into the line. The plane was probably a third full before they ever even called first class.
Krista and I got to sit together on this flight. I read until the meal was served - filet mignon, honestly one of the better airline meals I've ever had. I had ordered a third glass of wine but it never showed up (probably for the best, honestly) so eventually I gave up and went to sleep. I slept most of the second half of the flight.
We landed early in Seattle but had to wait for a plane to leave our assigned gate, so in the end we were pretty much right on schedule. We grabbed our bags and took a taxi home.
I was incredibly dehydrated by this point, and very tired and felt very grimy. I knew I needed a bit of time to decompress after the travel, so I unpacked, then took a shower. I finally crawled into bed around 2330 or 0000.Friday, 2020 March 20 Sunday, 2020 April 12