a glimpse of the future

We traveled home on New Year’s Eve, leaving Austin at noon and flying to DC.  Southwest Airlines just added a DC airport to their flight list and it was our first time there.  We spilled onto a circle of 9 gates, with a huge bar in the center.

It was like stepping foot onto the Millennium Falcon.


Each place setting had its own I pad. You could order a meal, drinks, dessert or play games.


We walked down this corridor to find a restaurant.  There were no stores, just the bright, new corridor lined with magazines, books, snacks, fruit, etc.

I’ve never seen so many different kinds of chips in my life.

Our restaurant was lovely and modern, with giant TV’s broadcasting the news and the Alabama/Washington game.  Banjo Man panicked when he saw the I-pad, but I took over the ordering and soon we had our sandwiches in front of us.



I had to giggle at this.  Despite all the techie stuff, the staff at the restaurant still hung their Christmas stockings!


We had a three hour layover and spent most of the time on stools here.  We ordered coffee and even shared a slice of peanut butter pie to celebrate the New Year.  I played a few rounds of “Wordfinder” on my counter I pad, somehow competing against other people in the spaceship.  I failed miserably and they won free apples.

After that humiliation I was ready to go back to the gate and read for a while.  Banjo Man stayed to watch the game and by 6:30 PM we were boarding our flight home.  In an hour or so we would be back in Rhode Island.

If you’ve read about our other returns to RI, you will understand that we were apprehensive about how this would go.  This time we parked at a Hampton Inn, using the “Park and Fly” rate, because our usual parking lot had closed down.

Other years we have suffered through lost car keys (having to rent a car to get home), dead batteries, below zero cold, 1 AM arrivals, ear infections, lost receipts to prove we prepaid, late flights and emergency car rentals.

We had no idea what nasty surprise this year would hold.  But our luggage arrived, the Hampton shuttle quickly picked us up and deposited us in front of our car (which hadn’t been towed, buried under snow or hit by another vehicle) and the Highlander actually started right up.

We couldn’t believe it.

Maybe we’re finally getting the hang of this traveling thing.



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