Saturday, April 30, 2011
Well, it is 9:30 AM here in Valencia and we are both feeling pretty decent considering our fifteen-hour journey on Thursday. We left for the airport at 4:00 so that we could comfortably be there by the 5:30 check in time. Amazingly we arrived at LAX at 4:50 and were checked in at 5:00. I inquired about exit row seating, but these days most airlines reserve bulkhead seats for their gold and platinum members. The Bradley terminal still does not have a decent place to eat once you have gone through security so we searched out the Daily Grill and ordered a drink and a quesadilla. We then made our way to security where we experienced the delights of a full body scanner. I was doubly glad that I had decided not to wear my thong underwear. (That’s supposed to be a joke!) We made ourselves comfortable and immersed ourselves in our Kindles. I could not help but notice they were calling a lot of people up to the podium and I could not believe they were all on the standby list. It occurred to me that these were frequent flyers that were being upgraded to business. Emboldened by this brilliant insight, I made my way to the podium and asked the young woman who had checked us in at the desk if, by some miracle, an exit row seat had freed up because its former occupants had been upgraded. She checked with her supervisor and then proceeded to give us two seats in the bulkhead row that have an amazing amount of legroom. Hallelujah!
The flight to Zurich was uneventful. We reached our destination in a little under eleven hours. We both had managed to sleep a bit and that was a good thing even if it meant that we had to make our way a bit groggily to Terminal A. The tram arrived at the very moment we had descended on the escalator. It was a quick trip to Terminal A where we once again went through security. We did go through passport control prior to being allowed to take the escalators up to the gates. Our flight to Valencia was scheduled to depart at 5:00 PM and we had about a half hour before the boarding procedure began. I discovered that there had been an equipment change and that instead of the 80 seat prop jet plane that we were scheduled to fly, we would now be making our way in an Airbus 320. You cannot even begin to imagine how thrilled Mr. White Knuckle flyer was when he made that discovery.
In order to kill some time I took a brief walk through the terminal and as I passed the podium at our gate I decided I would ask if by chance they had any exit row seats. Bingo! They did and so we made the two-hour journey to Valencia in relative comfort. It took a mere three minutes for bags to be unloaded on the carousel. Our bags were among the last out and once again they had all arrived. God bless Swiss! We made our way to the taxi stand and loaded in our four suitcases and two carry ons plus one purse much to the amazement of our taxi driver.
It took fifteen minutes to make the trip from the airport to Calle Borrull and Miguel was waiting for us at the door. He helped us bring our luggage up the one flight of stairs and, much to our amazement and gratitude he had already brought over all the stuff we had left with him last year and the two boxes that we had recently mailed from Los Angeles. We spent the next two hours unpacking and arranging things and we discovered that we have more than enough space to accommodate everything that we brought over for our extended stay. One more box is on its way from LA and it is a mix of magic apparatus and clothing. There is enough empty space available for the contents of that box so no worries there. We left a number of cartons to be unpacked today and that has been the morning’s task. We have now unpacked everything and even set up our little office in the second bedroom. I am sitting at our little makeshift desk as I type this.
At 9:30 I headed out to the little corner store to pick up some water and was warmly greeted by the proprietor. He remarked that he had not seen me for a while and I explained why. I next stopped off at La Forcola where I received a rowdy and rousing greeting. I mad a reservation for 10:00 o’clock and returned home to freshen up a bit.
We ate at 10:00 and shared a salad with mixed lettuces, raisins, orange slices and Brie and followed that with a Pizza Parma that was adorned with Serrano Ham and Parmesan cheese. I had a beer and Susan had a glass of red wine. We shared a scoop of mandarin chocolate ice cream for dessert and finished our meal with two coffees. We then came home and collapsed more than happy to be in our familiar surroundings.
No photos yet. They will be coming shortly, as soon as we take some!