Our flight got in to Philadelphia a half-hour early, and getting through Customs was SO bizarrely fast that I almost was able to get an earlier flight to Los Angeles. In fact, I made it to the gate for it, but they were full. So, I'm back at my normal gate, the flight leaves at 6:05 PM Philly time. (It's 3:45 now.) I get into L.A. at 9:15.
How fast was Customs? In Los Angeles, it generally takes me about 30-45 minutes to get through Customs. Here, I made it in…seven minutes! From getting off the airplane, making it to Customs, getting to the next terminal and arriving at my gate took a bizarre 23 minutes!
When all is said and done, it should be just about 21-1/2 hours of travel from leaving the hotel in Lisbon to opening the door back home. (The actual travel from Lisbon to Los Angeles is a more manageable 17 hours – slightly more manageable.) I was saved going through customs at the end because the transfer of planes was in Philadelphia, so that at least shortened things. I’d left enough time there for dealing with customs, getting to another terminal and then to the gate, though I was still wary about it, not knowing the airport (or if the plane would arrive late). As it happened, we seemed to have left Lisbon early which is weird, by about 15 minutes. Perhaps everyone was checked in – which seems unlikely – but there you have it. And then got into Philly even earlier.
I’ll have more to write about the adventurous flight tomorrow. I’m a bit beat at the moment, though I travel pretty well going west, so hopefully I’ll be back on Los Angeles time by then. If not, soon. I expect the elves taking care of the homestead to shout an exuberant "Whoopdee-do" when I get in...