— Palma de Mallorca, Spain
After moving out of our house, we spent a pleasant (if harried) few days in Marina del Rey before our departure. A friend picked us up early in the morning and drove us the short distance to LAX, and we were off on our adventure.
The first leg of our trip was an uneventful flight from LAX to Washington D.C., with just enough of a layover to stretch our legs. Our second flight was to Madrid, but operated by Aer Lingus, and it was entertaining to hear the brogue of our blonde-haired Irish stewardesses interacting with Spaniards heading home. The flight was shorter than I had prepared myself for, clocking in at just over 6 hours. Somehow we touched down an hour ahead of our scheduled landing time, so early that due to noise ordinance rules at Madrid’s Barajas airport, we had to land and stop far away from the terminal and ride a shuttle bus in from the plane.
Immigration was fast and easy (owing to the fact that no other flights were landing at that time), and we were quickly wheeling a cart with our 5 bags from Terminal 4 to Terminal 2, where our smaller connecting flight would be. Though not for 6 more hours. We walked my sister, who was on our two earlier flights, to the gate for her flight to Barcelona, where she would rendezvous with my parents.
What made the layover difficult was the fact that Barajas did not have free wi-fi. And AT&T’s international data roaming rates on the iPhone are prohibitive (though I am shelling out $25/mo for each of our phones to cover emergency map lookups and such). I didn’t want to sign up for the wi-fi account at the airport because I don’t yet know what the service in the rest of Madrid will be like. It might turn out to be worth it if much of the city’s other hotspots are locked down.
We met a friend who was joining us on our flight with enough time to eat a couple of bocadillos before catching the smaller SpanAir jet to Mallorca. I slept for the entirety of that one hour flight, having not gotten much rest in the earlier flights. I woke up during the landing, in time to see a suprisingly large island with parceled out into little farms and vinyards. The Palma airport is thoroughly modern, and grabbing a taxi to our hotel couldn’t have been easier. So far there have been no hiccups in our travel experience.
The weather here in Palma is perfect. Maybe 80 degrees with sun, down to the mid 60’s at night. It’s all a little surreal so far, but that may be an effect of the jetlag.