Friday, June 25, 2010
America, here we are
We were very glad to arrive in LA. There was a longish wait at immigration, but finally our finger and thumbprints were taken, and there were no problem with ESTA visa waiver - we didn't even need the printout I had ready. We had no problem getting our bags thanks to Fish: Cricket and I were walking around not seeing Cricket's bag but it was the first one Fish had collected so Fish was looking for his own bag. It was a longer line at customs although when we got to the point, the actual procedure to get through was very quick. Turned on phones and found we had local services, thank you AAPT.
We asked a couple of people and found the domestic terminal (Alaska airlines) rather quickly and within walking distance. Used a machine outside the terminal to get boarding passes and start checkin of bags (feeling proud of myself for use of new-to-me technology). Completed checking inside then entered line for security passage to gates. Long line. We could have taken our little suitcases as well as our backpacks as carryon, saving $20 each but we knew this before we left and had brought toiletries which were not permitted in carryon. We were early for flight so after finding our gate we had tea at Burger King, having forgotten that American "large" meals would be too large.
During the flight I tried Gogo internet which was free on Alaska airline at the moment, and had no problem connecting, but I was too tired to think of what to write where and to whom. It was also the wrong time of day to communicate with anyone.
There was hardly anyone at airport in Portland when we arrived (11:30pm)ish, so we followed signs nervously to baggage claim, which was right near the exit and friendly staff helped us find the taxi rank, as Sarah had told us the hotel did not have a shuttle (perhaps she meant at that time of night). I wasn't sure the taxi driver had understood which hotel to take us to, but he got us to the right one and my first tip was incidental as the $20 bill I had was a good tip over the cost of the fare.