Tuesday 18 June 2019

I’m going home

I awake with a thirst. And the sight and smell of the debris of last night’s room service. I could really do with something other than tap water to drink.

Crappy American bogs. Turning my grillox into bouncing bombs, skimming over the water. Disgusting. Am I the only person who has this problem?

After drying my bollocks, I pull on my kecks and walk outside in search of a vending machine. Pulling the room door shut behind me. Only when it’s closed do I think to check my pocket for the key card. Damn. It’s still inside the room.

Nothing for it but to toddle down to reception and ask for another key card. Luckily I don’t have to queue and the bloke behind the desk isn’t weird about giving me another key. He did check me in yesterday, mind, and seems to remember me.

Relief washes over me like a stream of warm piss down the leg while showering. Then I remember that I forgot to buy a drink. Fuck. I trail back downstairs. I’m getting some exercise, if nothing else.

I’ve arranged for a late check out as my flight isn’t until after 5 PM. My arse not being in the mood for running itself around town, I watch a couple of episodes of Fixer Upper to run down the clock. While finishing off the remains of my room service meal. I hate waste.

Next thing I know, I’m in a cab gliding along the freeway, airport bound.

I check in at the kerb (which they oddly spell “curb” over here) again. As my little grey trolley disappears down the belt, I pray that it makes it home OK. Especially as it holds the kids’ whiskey. I wouldn’t want anything to happen to that. I can imagine their little heartbroken faces as Dad tells them there’ll be no whiskey.

The selection of refreshment opportunities is surprisingly poor at Atlanta’s international terminal. I’m tempted to try one of the domestic ones, but I really can’t be arsed. Just too much messing around. So it’s Jekyll Island Seafood or Belgian Beer Bar. I don’t think the Belgian place does food. And I want to eat something substantial before boarding. Jekyll Island it is, then.

I check the menu before entering. Just to make sure there’s something I fancy eating that won’t leave my children destitute.

With no room at the bar, I sit at a high table next to it.

“I’ll eat later. How much is a neat double Jim Beam?” I ask the waitress.

“I’ll have to check. Most liquors are $9 to $ 11, but you get a dollar off for a double.”

“A double Jim Bean, no ice, then, please.”

What do I want to eat? Something fairly substantial, but not too heavy. A shrimp burger sounds nice.

“Could I have the shrimp burger, please?”

“We no longer have that,” my waitress replies, “would you like something else?”

If they don’t sell it anymore why the fuck don’t they take it off the menu?

“I can recommend the fish sandwich.”

“OK, I’ll have that.” I can’t be arsed to search through the menu again. And, after all, isn’t a shrimp burger a sort of fish sandwich? “And another Jim Beam, no ice, please.”

When I’ve spent about as much as I can afford, I transfer myself to a seat by my gate. Powering up my laptop and getting stuck into some more Taskmaster. It’s an excellently mind-freeing way of whiling away time.

I bundle my way onto the flight early again, arranging all my shit at my seat. No need for that blanket. I’m naturally sweaty enough to generate my own heat.

When the trolley comes around I grab myself a wine, but I’m already getting dozy. Before I know it the land of nod is making me its king.

I awake to see that it’s already light outside. And that I’ve missed both meal services. I couldn’t give a toss about that as it means I’ve had at least four hours of proper sleep. I’ll take that over a couple of shit airline meals any day of the week.

Waiting for my bag continues to be anxious time. Will the little fucker pop out this time? I see people I recognise from the flight flicking their bags off the belt. Bastards. I’m still a bit dozy. But yes, there it is, that scruffy little anonymously grey trolley bag. Without damp patches, too! Result.

I drag my sleepy arse off to the 397 stop. Ignoring the illegal taxi touts who are still waving their self-made “Official taxi” signs.

Something’s changed when I try to change to the 15 at Haarlemmermeerstation. Where’s the 15 stop? The usual lane is blocked off, and the stop where I just got off has a GVB sign saying it’s not in use. Bugger. Where does it stop now? I can’t be arsed to look. I’ll just walk it. Only ten minutes. Though I do feel totally knacked.

Odd completing the journey’s final leg on foot.

Jekyll Island Seafood Restaurant
6000 N Terminal Pkwy,
GA 30320.
Tel: +1 404-209-0907


Chap said...

You have commented before about your problem with American toilets. In his 1971 autobiography "Beneath the Underdog", the great jazz composer and bassist Charles Mingus describes how his cousin Billy Bones dealt with a similar issue by having bespoke sanitaryware installed in his San Francisco apartment. Perhaps there is an "Only Connect" question here.....

A Brew Rat said...

Thank goodness for Chap's comment. I had no idea what Ron was talking about. Bogs? Grillox?

Alistair Reece said...

You should have heaved over to the Gordon Biersch bar/restaurant in one of the domestic terminals, decent Germanic beer, solidly tasty burgers, and an excellent bar staff in my experience. Admittedly they do have a problem with serving their pilsner in a half litre glass, I have yet to actually have half a litre, usually it is a good 100ml more than that in their oversized glasses.

Anonymous said...

Charles Mingus was also the creator of a well known program for teaching cats to use the toilet instead of a litter box: