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Travel --> 2013 --> February 21 February 2013  
  20 February 2013

Dear Julio and Valeria,

What a day I'm having. It started yesterday. I realized I was going to need an adapter for my computer charger and I had to pick up the second phone. I was all set to ride my bike, but then I remembered that my bike is at the bike shop. But I have a car and that all went well.

I wanted to make sure the phones worked, too, so I checked them out. I'm pretty sure they are working, but not the way I expected.

Getting my bike ready to ride to the bus station went well In fact, I was an hour early! This was good, because the sun sets at 5:30 and was just setting when I got off the train. (the bus took me to the train). It was a short but cold ride from the train to the airport. Packing my bike into the suitcase/trailer went well and I got checked in for the SFO->MIA flight. It was too early to check me in for the MIA->SSA leg, but that was OK because I would have 18 hours to do that in Miami.

The flight wasn't so bad, in that I did sleep, albeit, a bit uncomfortable.

I bought a one-day pass for the airline lounge and as you will see, that was fortuitous.

I decided to see if I could make the phones do what I thought they should do. It was then I discovered that I failed to pack one of the charges. These are very common, so I didn't worry about it.

About 10AM I decided to check in. "Where is your Brazil visa?" I didn't know I needed a visa. Can I get it on arrival? The nice agent, Susie, at the airline concierge desk began to help me. She called the Brazilian Consulate and was informed that it takes 10 days! But, with a little cajoling, I was given hope that it could be done in one day, if...

Susie suggested that I get a receipt for the taxi ride to The Consulate as the airline might reimburse me. Again, this was fortuitous. It turns out I needed seven documents and a photograph. That is when I discovered my cell phone had gone missing! I only had my passport and my ticket. There was a man in the room that told me there was a company on the 22nd floor that could help me. I needed to have this turned in by noon. Amazingly, I was helped with finding all of the acceptable documents, but I returned to the closed door of the room at 12:05PM. What luck, the door opened and they were still processing the people that were there before noon and moments later my number came up.

All of my documents were accepted, but it will take two days to process, "Come back at 3PM on Friday". Thus my delay.

Back at the airport, I tried to find an airline employee that would help me. The supervisor was the coldest. Well, maybe Susie can help me?

Through security again, Oh yeah, in SFO I had to go through security twice because I had water in my water bottle. I don't go through the x-ray machine so I got the full body grope, twice!

They were getting to know me at the airport lounge check-in. Susie wasn't there, but Sandy and Luciel took up the challenge. First was rescheduling my flight; that was easy, Next it was finding my luggage that was checked through to SSA.

Luciel contacted the cab company for me -- the receipt had the phone number of the company and the cab number! A couple of calls and, YES! he did have it and he would be back at the airport in 15 minutes. What luck! I had to go out and meet him at the cabbie parking lot. He showed up within 15 minutes. What Luck!

Back through security.

So now I am in the airport lounge and my next task is to find lodging. I may even get reimbursed for it.

So I'll see you Saturday about noon, instead of tomorrow.

What is an adventure without a little misadventure?


Update 22 February 2013: Everything has gone as planned! Whew!

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