The Dog Doesn’t Die

Book reviews & random thoughts

NM/AZ 2009 Vacation: Getting There

On our most recent trip, we discovered two awesome new restaurants, a national park we’ll definitely return to, a lovely B&B in Taos, a couple of splendid museums, and an amazing tour of an Indian pueblo.

But first, we had to get from the Washington DC area to Albuquerque through Denver via Frontier Airlines. That proved a bit difficult.

Despite the fact that this is the second trip in a row where we had problems, and the second trip in a row where we took Frontier, I remain fond of the airline. Last June, they took a plane out of operation due to safety issues, and I’d rather be inconvenienced than endangered, even if it screws up my arrival time, which it did. This time, it was weather at the Denver airport that caused our connecting flight to be cancelled. Frontier booked us on the next flight out. No complaints there, either.

But instead of a tight connection of just under an hour, we had lots of time to kill at the Denver airport. For dinner, we returned to the Chop House, which we first visited in June. Stuckattheairport.com mentions it, and here’s the website for the place. We each had a beer and the filet mignon (to make up for not having dinner in Albuquerque), and we shared the chocolate cake. The Chop House chain should keep an eye on Craig, the maitre ‘d, who was a friendly presence, well in charge of the hungry masses of frazzled fliers. If I were running a restaurant, I’d consider him promotable.

We then discovered a quiet space for reading, well away from the normal airport chaos. I have difficulty describing how to maneuver in the interior of large spaces, so I’ll just say that if you’re ever at DIA and want to chill out, investigate what’s at the end of the various escalators, where you might be pleasantly suprised by a sort of reading deck.

Finally, we were off to Albuquerque, although it was later than scheduled and there was a problem with the ticket-taking that required a head count. Our concern was that we’d arrive too late to pick up our rental car. Instead, we got to the Hertz counter about 15 minutes before their scheduled closing time. There, we were greeted by a large African American man with a warm, calming presence, just what tired and cranky travelers need. In fact, I nominate this man to play God in the next Hollywood movie that has such a role. This guy also seemed highly promotable, and I hope Hertz appreciates him. We sure did. He took care of us quickly, and we headed off to the B&B, arriving a minute after 1 a.m.

Next up: Albuquerque, the world’s best B&B, Zinc, and the Day of the Dead.

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November 8, 2009 - Posted by | travel, weather | , , , , , ,

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