Monday, August 24, 2009

There and back agian.

1st off I need to thank the Palacin family for letting me stay with them in Barcelona being such great hosts.

I also need to thank the Banegas family for letting me stay with them in Banyoles for over a month, giving me a chance to work with Young Life and being my family away from my family.

And of course thank you for being my supporters and for all your prayers. I would never had made it with out you.

Now that the formal stuff is out of the way I am going to tell you about my last day.

I would say I woke up but I never really went to sleep, David Palacin and I stayed up late watching a movie and when we went to bed I was thinking to much about how I didn’t want to leave and what I was going to do when I got back to the states and before I knew it the sun was up.

I got dressed and made myself an espresso. The Palacins drove me to the air port, I checked in and tried to think of every reason I could to stay. I asked David to knock me out so I’d miss my flight but he wouldn’t do it.

When it came close to my departure time I knew I had to say my goodbyes and I did.

The Palacins waved me off through security and I was on my way.

I made the flight with plenty of time to spare and had no problems what so ever.

I arrived in London Heathrow just a little late.

Now I want to pause to tell you some thing.

I have been to a lot of air ports all around the world Hyderabad Malaysia, Hong Kong, Germany, Barcelona, Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Singapore, and of course Phoenix. Out of all these air ports I have never missed a flight. I have also had a (more or less) good experience at all of these.

Ok play.

So I arrive at Heathrow the only airport I’ve ever had a real problem with. last year I missed my flight to Spain and ended up spending 100 dollars on a pay phone to let Jonathan Banegas know that I would be a few hours late.

This year I was hoping for it to be different, I thought I know how Heathrow works. That’s just the problem with Heathrow soon as you think you know it there‘s a change, one time you take a tram to get to one place and have no security or anything the next time is a whole different story.

When I step out of the plane I see that it is raining. Go figure. Evidently we didn’t stop right at our terminal we stopped in some random place just off the runway and so we have to take some metal stairs down to the ground and then get on a bus.

The thing about metal is that when it rains it gets wet and when it gets wet it gets slippery and when it’s slippery American 18 year olds coming home from Spain with no traction in their shoes slip and fall.

Yeah I slipped and fell a few steps I bruised my arm and my pride.

There was a buss to take us to terminals 1,2,3, and 4. It just happens that my flight was at terminal 5 witch means I need to take another bus after I get to 1,2,3, or 4 to get there.

So I get on another bus and drive for 10 minutes.

I get off at terminal 5 and think that all I need to do now is find my gate and wait… I was wrong.

I find the signs that say terminal five connections and start walking and walking and walking.

I finally get to the customs… Wait customs? I thought I was connecting? …Well yes I am but in London they don’t trust whoever just checked all your passports and what not so they do it again. Ok, so now to my gate right? Wrong. Now I have to go through security AGAIN.

As I walk past the lines and lines of people waiting in line I find one that’s only about 30 people long and was the shortest.

I get in line only to find that this is a special type of security check where I need three trays for all my stuff one for shows belt and wallet, one for my laptop and one for my bag, my stuff goes through the x-ray and I go to get my stuff. Oh but I forgot to tell you that these tray’s are attached to the conveyer belt.

I have to grab my wallet, shows, watch, necklace, glasses, I-pod, head phones, laptop, and bag in a few seconds.

Thankfully I was smart enough not to try and put it all on as I grabbed it I just shoved it all in one of my pockets and found a bench a little ways away. I was amazed that I didn’t get the “ random” check.

I ALWAYS get the random check because I lived in India for 4 months in 2006 and still have the same passport.

After that I went to my gate and found they were boarding. The line was long but I snuck in to the 1st class line with no hassle the attendants were too busy to care about some kid in the wrong line.

So now I’m home free right? Wrong again.

I get pulled aside evidently they realized that they missed me at the random check earlier and decided to get it in now. (So much for sneaking in with 1st class to save time.) After a 20 minute taxiing delay the plane leaves London and I’m on my way home.

I arrive in Phoenix at about 5:30 and have to wait in my plane for 20 minutes because all the computers in customs are down. After they fix the computers I walk to baggage claim, find my bag and my brother Rem waiting for me wanting to know what took so long.

I am now in my house in Phoenix.

I will be having a get-together some time next week when the rest of my family gets back home.

I will send an e-mail with all the date and time.

Thank you all so much for everything.

See you at the party!

There and back again,

Alexander Benjamin Miller

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