Guatemala 7/3/2014 - 7/8/2014
Tuesday 7/8/2014 - DepartureOn the day of our departure, we got up at 6:30 a.m. Yoselin came and knocked on our door at 7 o'clock on her way to school. She was quieter than usual and gave us big long hugs. At 7:30, we went out and joined Humberto and Paulina at the dining room table for breakfast. Humberto told us that our vehicle is here (he was joking about Eddy's helicopter).
We had coffee, fruit, and toast with pineapple jelly for breakfast. Aracely woke up and emerged from her bedroom with her Winnie the Pooh. Then Eddy woke up and came out asking for his Tic Tacs.
A woman from Santiago Atitlan came by outside yelling "Patin! Patin!" This is a local dish from Santiago Atitlan. Paulina ran outside and bought three. They are wrapped in leaves and we sampled one containing beef in salsa with a tortilla. It was quite yummy. Others contained fish in a picante sauce, Humberto's preference.
Vanesa came in and greeted us. The van arrived a little early, shortly before 8:30. Humberto, Paulina, Aracely, and Vanesa walked us out to the street. Eddy stayed inside (Humberto had told us that Eddy had said he would miss us, so we suspected that he wanted to avoid the actual goodbye). We said our goodbyes and thanks and then left around 8:30. They continued waving until we turned the corner.
It is always difficult to say goodbye. We enjoy spending time with the children and they always grow and change way too much in between visits. But it had been an excellent trip and our hearts were happy as we headed towards Guatemala City and the airport.
We arrived at the airport at 10:45. Our layover in Miami was only going to be an hour and forty minutes. We know how far you have to walk to go through immigration there, and Craig would never be able to walk that far in that short a time. Even though he is usually reluctant to admit needing help and uncomfortable taking what he views as "special treatment," I convinced him that we should book a wheelchair to help him get through the Miami airport.
We checked in at a kiosk and then asked the woman at the desk to reserve a wheelchair in Miami. Our flight was already delayed by 15 minutes, which didn't bode well for our ability to make our already-tight connection. But we tried to remain positive.
We went upstairs to the food court. We sat at a table and I wrote in the journal and filled out our departure and arrival paperwork. Then at lunch time, we got 2-piece fried chicken meals with French fries, a dinner roll, and orange Mirinda soda from Pollo Campero. As usual, Guatemalans were buying large to-go bags to take on flights with them for friends and relatives abroad. Pollo Campero is a Guatemalan institution. By the time we make it to Miami, we always wish we had a shopping bag full of Pollo Campero with us!
After lunch, we then went through immigration and security and walked to our gate. The flight started boarding at around 1:50 p.m. It took no time at all because there were so few people on the flight. The guy next to us moved up to an empty row so we got a row to ourselves. We actualy pulled out at our originally scheduled time (2:25) instead of the delayed time (2:37). I typed up my notes during the entire flight while we listened to Ian Gillan in Black Sabbath.
We landed in Miami at 7:05 p.m. There was a wheelchair waiting for us on the gangway. The woman was very nice. We were very far from customs and had to take the Sky Train to get there. This time all of the immigration kiosks were out in the hallway. We went to a human immigration officer instead. We didn't have any checked luggage to collect, so we went through customs and were then ready to go to our gate. We took the Sky Train back to the same terminal we had started in, and went to our gate. It was now 8:00, and our departure time was 8:40, so the timing couldn't be more perfect. The wheelchair had really been a blessing. Craig was having some trouble walking tonight due to a busy previous couple of days with lots of walking, so he was thankful that he didn't need to try to run through the airport and risk injury.
I ran over to Cafe Versailles and got us some food to eat on the plane: jerk chicken wraps, orange Gatorade, and chips. We boarded the flight and it took off several minutes late. We didn't care - we were just glad to have made the connection!
We landed in Boston just before midnight. There was once again a wheelchair waiting on the gangway. The nice young man wheeled Craig to Central Parking, where we picked up the car and were home by 12:40 a.m.
Humberto, Vanesa, Aracely, Paulina