Flip Flop Flying

Nova York

with 6 comments

One of the great things about “swanning about South America in a rather louche way” (quote: Anne of I like) is that travelling and waiting around are no longer daunting tasks. I’ve been on enough flights and long bus journeys lately to completely get used to mentally hibernating for however long the journey takes. Even after being awake for 36 hours, I was still up for going out for a few beers with Derick and Jennifer when I arrived in Brooklyn after three hours waiting at São Paulo airport, a seven hour flight to Panama City, another hour of waiting, a four-and-a-half hour flight to Newark, and then an hour-and-a-half fannying around inside the airport, and another hour’s cab ride. Tiredness seems to be something that can be ignored now. I hope that sticks around.

So, yes: I’m in New York. This part of my trip doesn’t really feel like it is part of the trip; more like an intermission. Over the last month I’ve become increasingly ready to see some friendly faces and see some familiar sights. So, I decided to rearrange the US leg of my tour to travel east to west, instead of the planned route west to east.

Something that should be noted is US immigration at Newark airport. Apart from being dreadfully understaffed, creating an hour-long queue of sweaty tired travellers, it was excellent there. US immigration does have a terrible reputation, (example) but of the four times I’ve flown into New York over the past four years, I’ve never experienced anything other than polite friendliness. Last night, the officer and I had a chat about the Yankees. It was a thoroughly pleasant experience.

They speak English in the United States. That has been a joy so far. Even though I have found myself answering questions with “sim” a couple of times, like this morning when I did what I’ve been looking forward to most for the last couple of days: getting a cappuccino from Cocoa Bar on 7th Avenue, Brooklyn.

Written by Craig

May 18th, 2008 at 9:31 am

Posted in Uncategorized

6 Responses to 'Nova York'

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  1. I always fly into Newark when I can; never had the understaffing problems: usually I’ve had the opposite, and they’re always friendly, welcoming and less harrassed/harrassing than JFK. They even seem to WANT you to visit their country.
    Having just got back from SF though, it’s shameful how much more polite the average American in the street is compared to in the UK. Or London at least..


    18 May 08 at 17:03

  2. I’ll be flying into Newark on Tuesday, so it’s good to hear that it’s still a slick operation.

    I’m off to watch the footy at Nevada Smiths (Lower E side) on Weds with a Liverpool fan (I’m Man U – we had planned to watch ‘The Greatest Final Ever’ together, but Chelsea fucked it up). Anyway, feel free to join us, if you like.

    Would be funny to end up travelling all that way then end up watching the footy with another bloke from Lincoln..! But hey, you’re probably busy and that.

    Chris Russell

    19 May 08 at 02:34

  3. Welcome back! Gray day in Brooklyn, isn’t it. Are you in town long? Where will your travels West take you?


    20 May 08 at 18:42

  4. Thanks, Leslie. I guess I’ll be here for a couple of weeks. I’ve got no solid plan of where to go. I know that I’ll go up to Chicago and eventually to the West Coast, but where I go in-between, I don’t know yet.


    20 May 08 at 19:49

  5. Welcome to the states! Like Leslie, I’m wondering where your travels West will take you. Let us know if you need any help along the way. I’m in the midwest – so could provide advice in that area if you need/want any.


    23 May 08 at 17:02

  6. I’m thinking of nipping down to Baltimore and Washington first, then possibly across to Nashville, up to Chicago, Milwaukee, Minnesota, then over to Seattle.

    Of course, if there are places in between that you think I should see, that would be great to know about.

    Thank you.


    23 May 08 at 17:05

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