USA Road Trip No. 1 - San Francisco to New York

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Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Verse 1: Falmouth - New York

New Year’s Day 2010 and we’re off on our honeymoon, one month of road tripping across the USA ahead of us, San Francisco to New York City via the southern states so we’re calling it the Big Smile – even if it is a little crooked.

That's us on the left by the way.. Sharmila & Ingo.





First step is to get to Heathrow airport from Falmouth – easy right? Well think again. Our lovely plan to spend New Year’s Day lunch in Sunningdale with my cousin Sue’s family, my brother Adrian and his girlfriend Jess and then get a lift to Heathrow started to become just a distant fantasy when our trusty (?) VW Sharan broke down at Okehampton. After waiting over 2 hours at a Little Chef (rank food) for the AA we had lost our healthy journey cushion and could feel the ‘will we get to the airport in time’ panic set it. After a bit of faffing and several calls to regional control, the AA man dropped us off at Exeter Airport (and arranged for our car to be towed back to Falmouth) as he was not allowed to take us all the way to Heathrow. We had only one choice… pay 240 quid for a taxi from Exeter to Heathrow and hope that the driver was a friend of speed.

Sometime later, with our nerves jangling and no nails left we finally made it to Heathrow at 5.45pm with time to spare. Here we go! Security was no big deal, apart from the extra frisking with latex gloves and bag turn out at the boarding gate.

7.5 hour flight. Middle aisle seats on the plane, American Airlines, basic but did the job. Tried to watch movies but we both fell asleep, waking only to munch the dry chicken and soggy pasta presented to us as food. Uneventful flight as it was dark so nothing to look at. Good landing in NYC just ahead of schedule. Sharmila’s legs had expanded so much on the plane that she couldn’t get her boots back on. TIP: Don't wear knee-high boots on a plane ; )

10.30pm local time. NYC – JFK airport, cold and snowy. After the trauma of nearly missing the flight we decided not to crash out with our blankets at JFKfor the connecting flight to San Fran at 10.30am the next day and sought out some cheap accommodation near the airport – everything booked up apart from JFK Inn, a free shuttle bus ferried us to a tired pit-stop kind of brick building in an industrial estate near the airport, classic half the letters on the sign didn’t light up kind of thing. Huge room but very utilitarian. Watched David Letterman, he was a very detached interviewer and the interviewees were equally dull. We were left wondering how come he managed not to vilified about being an adulterer when Tiger Woods is being lambasted left right and centre? Just because he confessed on TV, sounds a bit fishy to me – double standards, embedded racism? Anyway whatever. Then fell asleep watching The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Scottish and funny. Good night..