How we are happy to see you again...while it seems like I was only just here with Cait for her brief college tour in February (I will write about it at some point), and Peter was only in the States just last week, neither Nick nor Kelsey had not stepped on U.S. soil since August of 2014.
So, here we are, enjoying the convenience and ease of vacation life here and the way our dollars simply fly out of our wallets to accompany said convenience. From art supplies Cait needs for her summer intensive program to the yearning for Thai we've been missing, it's a never-ending flow. That being said, given how regulated our expenses are overseas, the wallet-lightening is limited to once a year and therefore, well, expected and a bit easier to take.
We were very lucky this year to arrive in time to celebrate the 4th of July in the States. A few minor snafus nearly left us in Managua and then Atlanta, two of the three being due to passport issues and, yes, the second passport issue was in Atlanta. For some unknown reason, our boarding passes for our flight from Atlanta to BWI (no visa needed that I know of) were rejected (the double-blinking red light of no-go). The gate attendant in Altlanta boarding the flight to BWI (yes, read that again) promptly told Peter she needed his passports (um, WHAT?). He gave them to her, and then they were rejected due to not having the proper visa.
Yes, really. Apparently, we needed a visa to get to Baltimore, and not the kind that earns you Capital One points...who knew?
So, I boarded with the kids and waited for a very tense 30 minutes, while Peter inexplicably had to explain several times how we A. shouldn't need to show passports, B. do not need visas to go to Baltimore, and then wait for not one but TWO supervisors to show up in the hopes of fixing the glitch.
Finally, he boarded, the door shut, and off we went...
Then promptly after the Super Shuttle dumped us and our 9 bags of stuff (someone felt like not using his entire R&R allotment) at the Salty Dog 'Stead, we did what anyone in their right mind would do...and headed for the Old Stein Inn so that we could satisfy three meals worth in our dinner (breakfast and lunch didn't so much happen on Friday due to the numerous snafus...but tasty spatzle made up for that quickly). The kids got to hang, the adults sipped tasty hefe-weiss brews, and all was well with the world....