The day dawned bright and sunny in Lucaya, Grand Bahama, but with a fairly strong wind blowing as it was yesterday. We started with a temp of around 54° this morning, a far cry from the more salubrious temps in the 70s we had last week. This drop was due to the severe chill that also affected the Atlantic coastal areas and brought snow to parts of Florida. By flight time – 1:30 pm – it had warmed to 58° with the wind even stronger. We got checked out of Lighthouse Pointe in good order; it was easy. The Bresters, Alvin and Angel, had arranged for a taxi to the airport, which we shared with them.
We got a chance to say goodbye to Taylor and Kenley before we left Lighthouse Pointe; it was a good time to be with them this last week. We were there because of their wedding on New Year’s Eve.
Getting through the airport functions was easy, including US customs and the TSA check. With my metal knee I have to go through a hand pat-down which adds some time to the process, but we weren’t delayed. Once through all that we had about an hour wait before boarding the aircraft, a CRJ900 regional jet, similar to the one we came in on.
Our flight to Atlanta was uneventful, and we arrived to sunshine and 34° weather. But we didn’t have to go outside this time as we did on the way in; we were able to stay within the terminal structure the whole time. We were concerned about this because when we came in we left the airport and stayed overnight in Atlanta and had to go outside to catch a shuttle to the hotel and then had to take a taxi to the international terminal in the morning since the shuttle did not go to international. Because of that we were concerned that international was separate from domestic and wondered how we would get from international to domestic on the way back. No problem! From within the system they all come in to the same facility and we just had to go from Terminal D to Terminal A using the internal train system! We had arranged for wheelchairs in advance and they took us all the way.
We were happy that our luggage was checked all the way through to Phoenix for us and once we cleared Freeport we did not have to go through customs, TSA, or baggage check again.
We did not get a chance to say goodbye to Angel and Alvin Brester because we missed them during deplaning even though they were only a couple of rows behind us. Either they were delayed in deplaning or got by us as we were getting set up in the wheelchairs.
We had a 5-hour layover between flights, so had plenty of time to have dinner. We had the wheelchair attendants drop us off at the middle of Terminal A and we had drinks and dinner at the Gordon-Biersch Restaurant there. I chose it because it was a sit-down restaurant rather than one of the many food court options available. That got us out of the flurry in the main part of the terminal, though Gordon-Biersch was very busy itself. We entered through the smoking section but quickly moved to the non-smoking area and got seats. We had not had a proper lunch and our last “meal” was at breakfast around 8:30 am, so we knew we were hungry. We ordered our drinks and then the Blue Crab and Artichoke Dip appetizer but told our waitress we would wait to order anything further until after that. The appetizer was so large and so rich and delicious we were not hungry enough to order anything else so we quit at that. I wouldn’t hesitate to order than again; it was good! And I notice that there are four Gordon-Biersch restaurants in the Phoenix area so we might try them again to see what else they have to offer. I must say that my Reserve Manhattan (reserve whiskey, vermouth, bitters, black cherry) was excellent (I had two!) and Elaine said her margarita was good. Gordon-Biersch is primarily a brewer, though.
The Atlanta airport is a very busy one, and we got a good exposure to that this afternoon. It seems well laid out, though, and not confusing as long as you know which terminal and gate you are going to. But the foot traffic can be overwhelming. Since we need wheelchairs to get through the mess we don’t have to worry about that, though. The attendants know the way and we just rely on them and retreat into our shells.
Our flight from Atlanta leaves around 8:30 pm, so I will post this before boarding. I started writing this while on the plane from Bahamas but wrote the most while in the airport in Atlanta. I’ll leave the rest until tomorrow. While we had a great trip and it was good to see Shauna and Casey as well as Taylor and Kenley, we are now anxious to be back home again. We miss our boys and know they have missed us. They will be very excited when we roll in around 11:30 tonight!