I had no problem getting an Uber driver at 3 am this morning. There is a new, designated spot in the Seattle airport’s parking garage, and Abdulqadir (my driver) showed up in his Toyota Prius in 7 minutes. As always, it was nice to unpack my little souvenirs from Mexico, from my bags today!
Estero del Yugo is an estuary in the far northern outskirts of the city of Mazatlán. There is a trail around it that we traversed today. The foliage around the estuary is dry this time of year, and the water level was low.
Even so, we spotted herons, ibises, pelicans and a beautiful pileated woodpecker with its red-crested head. A single deer across the water made an appearance as well, but we did not see it again, even after we had made it to the other side.
I made it into Mazatlán on Monday. My Uber driver showed up in just a few minutes after I had summoned him, even though this was 3 am in the morning! (to make my frightfully early departure out of Seattle airport at 5 am).
I arrived in Mazatlán on a national holiday, Benito Juarez’s Birthday. Juárez was a national hero and president of Mexico (1858-1872).
Top: Alaska Airlines, at the gate at LAX after our arrival at 7.30 am. Bottom: Shortly after our arrival at Mazatlan airport. The airport is really small – only one other jet was there at our arrival. There may be only as many as 4 or 5 jets on the gates at the airport at any one time.
My bags are packed .. for a trip to Mazatlán, Mexico, to visit my friends Bryan and Dale there. I will take Alaska Air: two 2 ½ -hr flights, with a stop at LAX. I’ve been to Puerto Vallarta, to Nogales (border city south of Tucson, Arizona), and to Cancun, but not to Mazatlan.
Dexter the ’emotional support’ peacock was denied access on a United flight from New York to Los Angeles on Saturday, even though his owner paid for an extra seat for him. (I am sure everyone on the plane would have needed emotional support, with a screaming peacock in the cabin).
Maybe all of this was simply a ploy to entertain Dexter’s 5,000 followers on Instagram.
Last night I watched ‘Lapland Odyssey (2010)‘ (Finnish, subtitled in English). It reminded me a little of The Hangover (2009): three buddies on a mission to help the one who’s in trouble with his girlfriend.
I was intrigued by the movie’s snowy landscapes, and the flashes of Northern lights in the sky. Some scenes feature Rovaniemi, the capital of Lapland, in northern Finland.
The town was virtually destroyed during World War II, but today it’s a modern little city billing itself as the ‘official’ home town of Santa Claus (it has a Hotel Santa Claus), and for viewing the Northern Lights.
I unpacked my bags today, and started going through my mountain of junk mail.
It’s bitterly cold on the East Coast (Boston at -6 °F/ -21°C), and frozen iguanas are falling out of the trees in Florida. Zoologists say they will ‘thaw’ again and come back to life. Here is Seattle it was a balmy 49°F/ 9°C today, with rain.
I missed my connection to Seattle. We left Frankfurt way too late. High gusting winds (across Europe today), delayed our departure by 50 minutes. Then upon arriving at Heathrow’s Terminal 5, we spent another 20 agonizing minutes on the tarmac, waiting for a gate to open.
As soon as I got off the plane, I made a run for it. There was still 10 minutes to spare to the Seattle departure time, but no-no-NO! – not enough time, they said at the security check point, stopping me. (Why is there another security checkpoint for connecting passengers? Maybe it’s a United States destination thing only.)
So now I stood in line at the British Airways counter for 40 minutes. Re-booked my ticket to Thursday. Exiting through passport control took even longer. One ‘crosses’ the UK Border into the UK (big bold letters at passport control). By the time I made it to the airport hotel it was four hours later. But hey! Today is done, tomorrow is another day, and I will have another shot at making it home.
7:00 am My bags are packed! I am taking the train back to Frankfurt this morning.
Shortly after twelve noon I will board British Airways to London, and then on to Seattle from there.
11:00 am I made it to Frankfurt Airport .. but Deutsche Bahn made me sweat a little. My original train was delayed by more than an hour, and then the rebooked train was late as well. Then my phone’s British Airways app said ‘Sorry, missed connection’ and I thought Oh no! the flight to London must be completely delayed. But no, there was on problem – it was just that the app could not find a network to connect to.
I spent some time in Rheinauhafen (‘Rhine old port’) today. It is a former port facility on the Rhine*, now rebuilt into modern condominiums, offices and commercial buildings. A Microsoft office building was completed in 2008, the main condominium building in 2009, and most of the other buildings a few years before that, or a few years later.
*Cologne is the largest city on the Rhine. Here in Cologne it is the Nieder-Rhein (the lower Rhine).