Sunday, August 31, 2014

Travel Day - the journey home...................

Ever had one of those days when NOTHING goes WRONG!!!!   I know - make sure you read that right - I should have bought a lottery ticket at some point!

Woke up and WAIT A MINUTE!!!!!    There is something VERY wrong with this whole picture.  Yes - the SUN - yes - THE SUN was shining.   I felt like I had been transformed into another country.  The sky was blue, there was a gentle breeze, the pavement was dry and not a hint of the blustery, miserable conditions that we had encountered over the previous two days!!!!

Had breakfast with a couple of riders that were still at the hotel and then I was off on an adventure. I had a couple of hours to kill before catching my plane.

I walked downtown and if you have never been to St. John's when I say DOWN town - I mean DOWN.
Had to walk DOWN this hill to get to the main part of town. 

Too bad my Fitbit battery was dead and I put the charger in with my luggage that I sent home. Drat!!!!  I am sure I would have done a LOT of flights in those couple of hours.

Anyway - my first stop was the bike shop. I had dropped the bike off the previous day for them to pack up.  When I had called them on the phone two weeks ago - they were very accommodating. However when some of us contacted them once we arrived, they seemed to back track on their helpfulness.  I stopped in to make sure that the bike was in fact packed and ready to go so when I stopped later in the day - I wouldn't be waiting around.

Yep - the bike was packed and ready to go!  Phew!   I was a bit worried about that.

Townie bike for sale at the bike shop!!!!!   come on - these bikes are fun and do NOT involve hills!!!!!

 Had an amazing view of Signal Hill from the Harbour - yes - can you believe that they rode up that hill in the crazy wind and rain?????   So glad I didn't feel obligated to do it this year!!!   It is quite a climb in a very short distance. But the view from there is spectacular.

Cabot Tower on top of Signal Hill

Signal Hill in the distance - one of the streets with those crazy houses!!!!
More crazy streets - very hard for you to appreciate the steepness but trust me - I was huffing the first time I walked. I attribute that to the fact that I carrying stuff!!!!  

Or if you want to walk between Water and Duckworth - you can take the stairs!!!!!    That is a LOT of stairs!!!!!

Anyway - I spent a couple of hours wandering around - I was looking for a specific piece of art that I had seen last year and wouldn't you know it - I finally found it in the last shop I checked.  But I did find a few other goodies along the way.

Someone told me that The Duke of Duckworth had the BEST fish n chips and when I mentioned that to the girls in the last shop - they said OH NO - you have to go to The Ship Pub (same owners - but supposedly better).   OK so I had nothing left to look at so I wandered over to the pub. It was just opening for the day.

I ordered the fish n chips. And an Iceberg beer which is one of the beers we had tasted the day before at the Quidi Vidi Brewery.  When the girl took my order - she asked me if I wanted dressing and gravy?  Hmmm - and that would be?????   Well I thought - when in Newfoundland - order what they would order - so I got the works.   Turns out the dressing is in fact - a dressing with bread crumbs and other goodies that goes onto the fries and gravy on top of the whole thing, but not on the fish.  Normally I would NOT eat that, but hey - why not. The fish was lightly battered and fried and I am NOT a huge fish eater, but this fish would melt in your mouth.  I have NEVER eaten fish that was that fresh or that tasty.  Who cared about the fries - the fish was to die for. Apparently - it practically comes out of the ocean and into their kitchen!


Well - lucky me as I was the ONLY person to be served in the restaurant that day - at least from the kitchen.  Apparently after the chef cooked my meal  - something happened to the stove and they had to shut the kitchen down for the day!   Since I had time to kill - I consumed a couple of those yummy Iceberg beers!

Then back to one store to pick up something that I wasn't sure I wanted, but after the beer - oh yes - I wanted it!  Just a book - nothing too exciting!

Back to the hotel and caught the shuttle to the airport.  The driver (who I remember from last year) made a detour down town so I could collect my bike and then a quick drive to the airport.

Now Air Canada does need to come up with a FIRM policy on the payment of luggage.  Last year - when I did the check-in - I said I had TWO bags to check - one was a duffel bag and one was a bike.  I paid $50 for handling for the bike and an extra $20 for the second piece of luggage.  The agent said - I should have only paid the $50, not the extra $20.  Oh well - I wasn't going to make a fuss and try to claim the money back.  So this year when I did the check-in - I only paid $50.  This time the agent said - that was wrong and I had to pay an extra $20 for the second item.  No big deal.  But make up your minds people!!!!

Anyway - off to the over sized luggage area to drop off the bike.   The people there were EXTREMELY friendly.  Last year - they were NOT.   They even helped me tape up the box (and provided the tape and scissors - which they did NOT last year).   And we had a great chat all the while we were doing that.  Last year - they wouldn't even touch the box. I had to empty it, lift it - whatever. This year - well - no comparison!!!!!   Now all the luggage is checked and I am off to the gate to wait.

Oh dear - the flight looks like it is going to be late leaving.  Well - no big deal - I've got a book, but there was a family there and one of the kids was stuck in a stroller and he did not want to be in the stroller.  There were two or three other kids in the same family.  The mom did NOTHING to console this kid in the stroller.   I was tempted to go and ask her what her problem was. It was very annoying and when we finally got on the plane - her kids dumped their toys on the first seat and took off down the plane.  I would have killed those kids if they were mine.

Anyway - as we are sitting in the lounge waiting - they are calling individuals up.  No idea why. Then my name got called.  OK - so what is this about?   Giving me a new seat. A MUCH nicer seat - yep - a seat in BUSINESS class.   Apparently the next plane out of St. John's was also going to be late and they were trying to fill this plane - which they did. But it meant that some people got bumped up.   Hey - that is just fine by me!!!!!!    However I had bought a set of head phones so I could watch the movie and had already sent my head phones home. Also bought snacks as I was prepared to sit in economy.  Didn't need to buy the  head phones or the snacks after all!!!!

Had a very comfy flight home and I plugged those headphones in and watched a VERY FUNNY movie - The Other Woman and I never once heard those kids!!!!!!     Although at one point - we are near Toronto and all of a sudden my ears are killing me.  Oh crap - forgot about the pressure thing.   I never wear head phones (ear buds on a plane - I usually read, but this time - I knit!!!!!!)   With my bamboo needles of course.

Luggage came off relatively quick and then I was home.   I must say that it is good to be home. It has been a crazy summer.  While I was away - I kept telling people how on previous trips - I got the urge to purge when I got home because I was so used to having so little with me.  Well - you guessed it - I was up half the night figuring out what to dump and on that note - I am off with a HUGE URGE TO PURGE!!!!!

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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