Day 562 Atlanta

We met Bec & Alastair in the lobby to catch the subway to the airport together. Julian’s flight was an hour before ours and he’d already left. We pulled our luggage through the security doors and out the automatic external doors. Alastair saw Dan’s messenger bag and turned heels, racing back upstairs to get one for the plane. When he returned Dan remembered he hadn’t packed a wet bag for his camera and raced back upstairs. We made it to the subway eventually.

There has been a service suspension at Runnymede station due to personal injury at track level. Trains will be turning back at Keel and Islington.

We got off at Dundas West and hailed a cab. Bec was nervous we were running out of time; she’s always had slow processing times through US customs at Pearson. Dan and I were relaxed; our last few trips to the US were seamless and quick. A $3 train and bus ride each turned into a $50 taxi fare.

We lost Bec & Alastair at Customs. You can’t loiter and wait for friends. We proceeded through security. I forgot my liquids bag in my carry-on, Dan left his jacket and phone in his pocket. We didn’t have to take off our shoes. We waited. Almost half an hour later a frustrated Bec emerged into the security line. Both had o remove shoes and stand in the xray scanner and then get patted down. Then their bag was tested for explosives. The airline had copied her passport number wrongly so her ESTA didn’t automatically appear then she was successively “randomly” selected for everything.

I slept for the first hour. I read my ebook for the second. At Atlanta we spent our 4 hour layover wandering Terminal E, Bec and Al caught the plane train to another terminal while Dan and I paid US$ 60 for lunch. I forgot food is usually incredibly overpriced and always disappointing in airports, unless you are in Hong Kong. The duck breast I had hoped to treat myself with smelled like truffle oil had been added to the wasabi lakes under the vegetables and waves of nausea hit me and burrowed into my ethmoid bone. I couldn’t finish much and was still hungry.

We moved to the food court and played Sushi Go! after Bec and Al ate burrito bowls. Bec won one round, I won the next four. We learned the game 4 days ago and now we don’t need to announce when to ten cards over; like a dance company on stage we see and hear each other pause, inhale, and simultaneously flip our cards over. A table of extremely tanned white family shoved hamburgers and fries into their mouths and an Asian woman stood in queue at MacDonalds wearing a face mask. Surely wearing gloves or not touching any surfaces or hand washing are far more effective infection control methods than a poorly fitted disposable paper mask?

Looking forward to beach and sunshine tomorrow. I’ve already shed my down jacket.

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