New York to Denver via CHICAGO!

Trip Start Dec 26, 2009
Trip End Feb 06, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Colorado
Thursday, January 21, 2010

New York to Denver -we got up at 3:30am (after jet lag kicked in) and made sure we had everything as we didn't want to hold up the shuttle bus. Waited downstairs to wait for the agreed time 4:30am in the freezing cold (it was really really, cold) but after 15 minutes, no shuttle, Bill rang the company and they said new time for pickup was 5:10! We could have slept in!!!!! Back in the hotel to wait in the warmth and back outside at 5:10am, at 5:30, still no sign of the shuttle bus, getting ticked off by now as we knew how long it would take to get through customs and security and also the additional security just before you board so on the phone again to confirm – new time 5:40! Shuttle bus driver was a very very very angry man (seething would be a better word) but we didn’t care, he just had to drive the damn bus to the airport, we weren’t there to make idle chatter. Bus was packed again (they must make a fortune) but we were first to be dropped off so when he went around the back to get the bags (anger was just emanating out of every pore of his body) he gave me my bag, I gave him the biggest Aussie smile and thanked him – he took a step back, smiled and said "have a nice flight" well, I am sure if I hadn’t smiled & thanked him, he would have thrown our bags onto the street and taken off before we had a chance to get onto the sidewalk!! Hahaha)

We had no problem in the security area, we knew the drill so we had everything ready, all gels and liquids in a small plastic bag, nothing in our carry on that would attract the attention of the officials, just take off your shoes, coats, jumpers, belt, etc get them through the xray machine and walk through the metal detector machine –easy. Bill was at a different security point than me, and as I waiting on the other side for my stuff to come through, they took my backpack off the line and asked me to step out of the line. I was trying to wrack my brain – what had I missed, is this going to hold us up, what could possibly be wrong. They put my bag through the xray machine again, and the young guy came to speak to me –I was nervous but tried not to show it (I thought maybe it was my medication but there was no way that was going into the checked luggage again!!!) the only thing that was in my backpack was a big beautiful Mikasa vase we bought in Macys for the Foglemans to thank them for putting us up at their place and picking us up at the airport. The guy said “what is that in your backpack, is that a vase?” and I said in my calmest voice “yes, its for our friends in Denver – is it ok to take it on the plane?” I didn’t want him to take it off us, it was too lovely to just chuck away, I would have been gutted but he smiled and said “ its ok to take on the plane,it looks like a lovely vase and thats a lovely thought maam, I am sure they will love it” – phew, I thought we were going to have to chuck it away.

Onto the plane and off to  - you would never guess - Chicago – we knew we had a stop but didn’t know where that was going to be so now we have seen the movie, watched the stage production and now we have seen the Chicago airport!  I took a photo of Charles and Wicket at the airport to prove we were there.

We were sitting in the lounge having a drink and we looked out at the plane we had just  disembarked from and our 2 pieces of luggage were sitting on the tarmac all by themselves – I couldn’t believe it – I took photos of it to prove that our luggage had really been on the tarmac (in case they lose them) and they sat there for ages just under the plane – it was nerve-wracking – we could see them and we were so afraid they were going to be left behind – it was like watching a car smash, you know you should look away but I was transfixed watching anyone and everyone approach the plane and just ignore the luggage – Bill said get away from the window but I couldn’t help myself, it became an obsession – I needed to see if the bags were going to make it on the plane!

It was time to go down to board the plane and every time I passed a window, I would look out at the tarmac to see if the luggage was still there sitting under our plane – it was. When we got to the boarding gate, they had changed the departure gate and that meant also the plane, Bill and I were really freaking out, the replacement plane (at a totally different boarding gate) was boarding and our luggage was still sitting under the previous plane – Bill grabbed the guy on the desk, pointed to our luggage and told him (nicely) that our luggage had better get on the new plane and not on the old plane – but crisis averted, just as he was ringing the ground crew, someone came and picked it up and took it to the new plane, our hearts were in our mouths – my beautiful Mood fabric, Bills gorgeous jacket he wore to the wedding, all our toiletries, etc! I don’t think we could take it happening yet again – it would end in tears and it wouldn’t be Bill and I crying – there could also be blood and again, not ours! But they appeared to be going in the right direction towards our new plane when we boarded so here is hoping! So on our way jetting across US towards Denver and Jeff, Debbie & DJ – another wonderful time will be had by all when we catch up with them (cant remember if I mentioned but we met these most amazing people on our 1999 round the world tour) and have been friends ever since.

Onto Denver, it appears to be very flat from the plane and even when you are on the ground, you can see for a fair way. Debbie & DJ picked us up at the airport and drove us home to their place. Wow, you should see this house, its really really beautiful and big - it even has a basement (not that you could call it that, it is fully furnished with pool table, tv, carpeted and just really spacious with sporting memorabilia). Debbie hasn’t changed one bit, she is still the same caring, loving & beautiful person she was when we first met her in 1999 and we are sure Jeff will be the same. DJ told us that our bedroom is haunted so I am looking forward to see who comes to visit (maybe they could bring our bags from the other side?? hahaha) Debbie really liked the vase we bought her and it suits her home perfectly. I had a sleep (catching up on the last few weeks, it so peaceful here so had no problem falling asleep).  I keep joking that their house is really on a disused movie set as we haven’t seen any neighbours and its so quiet, you hear absolutely nothing even though there are heaps of houses around here. Debbie made us a lovely casserole for dinner (she is a really good cook - sort of tasted like a chicken enchilada but in casserole form, very yummy and Bill had seconds). Jeff is away on business at the moment but will be home tomorrow night so we are looking forward to catching up with him also. Bill looks shattered and could hardly keep his eyes open at the dinner table so off to bed for some well-earned rest and so ends day 1 in Denver!
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