Yesterday I decided to not pack the bike at the hotel, since that would have entailed taking public transportation to the rail station with 2 pieces of heavy luggage. Instead, I put the trailer on and cycled to the train station. The ticket counter didn't open until 6 am, but there were no "hours" signs, so nobody really knew what time they opened. The automatic ticket machines only accept cards with a chip and pin #, so I sweated it out for a few minutes. The ride is only 18 minutes and drops you directly at the airport. I spent 1.5 hours folding my bike and reconfiguring all gear back into the duffle and 20 minutes to get through security, but I had checked in via a kiosk, so I just had to check my bags and pay for the one. That part was pretty quick. Security was right at the gate... interesting.
KLM was very cognizant of my lunch request this time. They distributed the special meals first (as opposed to coming to the Netherlands, when they messed it up and distributed them last and had given my meal away by accident), though the meal was very institutional.
At JFK, the whole journey went weird. First you go through passport check, then collect your bags, then go through customs, where they take your little "I am not taking any dangerous flora or fauna home" form, then you walk the length of that terminal, stand in line to re-check your bags, run upstairs to Airtran, run outside to the terminal under construction, back through security (20 min), then to the gate, which has changed. There was only about 1 hour between flights. A little hairy, but I made it.
Home sweet home.
Dwight had saved all bad news up while I was gone. The dog had to be put down and a friend was having serious trouble. I guess I am glad to have not known. It pays to have a wonderful person at home.