Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Day One and Two - Travel

No photos from Day 1. We spent a lot of time traveling. Jamie and I met Alex at the Concord Trailways bus station in Portland at noon. We arrived at Logan Airport around 230p. Checkin was smooth.  Apparently I have forgotten how to travel (I'm sure I will get plenty of practice on this trip) and not only was I reminded by security to sign my passport (it's new, that's my only excuse!), I also left me cell phone in my pocket when trying to go through the metal detector. Oops! Since our flight wasn't scheduled to leave Boston until 644p, we ended up with plenty of time to kill. Unfortunately, since we were flying Air Canada, the terminal we were in had three gates and the tiniest store ever seen....so our feelings of hunger were not satisfied.

Our flight boarded to Toronto and we arrived about 90 minutes after we departed. A very uneventful flight. Upon arriving at YYZ, we went through customs and found our gate for our flight to São Paulo. We had three hours to spare, so we found a burger joint near our gate and enjoyed a sit down dinner. It was a "sports bar" as far as airport sports bars go, and there was a lot of activity from patrons watching the NBA game. When our flight was called, we lined up with the crowds and boarded. Luckily, Jamie and I were not only seated together, but in the center of the 3-3-3 plane, behind a bathroom, so we had a ton of extra leg room (con: no seat pocket and a weird tray table). Though I have traveled pretty extensively, it was by far the longest flight I've ever been on in one stretch (ten hours). Not great. I think I made a mistake by not accepting any food or drink, so I was very hungry and dry by the time we landed in Brazil. But, we made it!

Baggage Claim seemed to take forever in Brazil, but customs was a breeze. We caught the hotel shuttle to our Hotel for the night, the Hotel Pullman, just a few miles from the GRU airport.

Unfortunately, having arrived so early (930a), the hotel was not yet prepared to check us in, so we had to sit in the lobby until 1115a. We checked into our two adjoining rooms and all took our turn showering off the travel grime. Then....we napped.  For four hours, I was dead to the world.  Once we were all up, we were pretty hungry, so we dined in the hotel restaurant when it opened at 630p.  Trying to be mindful of local produce (and ice), I had a simple pasta dish with pesto sauce and a Coke Zero. I think the hit of this meal was the "pao e manteiga" which was the bread and butter that was served before our meal. The bread had some salt on the outside and was absolutely soft and delicious on the inside. Heaven! We went straight to bed as we had an early flight to Peru the following morning.

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