Sunday, September 13, 2009

First Impressions

Lisbon Airport, after the check-in with 2 close friends.
Departed from Lisbon on the 11th of September at 8.00LT (40 minutes delay) we headed to Frankfurt on a Lufthansa Airbus A321-200 where we arrived with only 20 minutes of delay after landing on runway07L. The flight from Lisbon to Frankfurt was quite boring and the four of us spent the time sleeping due to the fact that we hadn't slept that night because we attended a big friend's party at Silk Club in Lisbon and went directly to the airport for a 16 hour adventure to Orlando. Well on the ground at Frankfurt we had almost 3 hours to hang around, check the shops, eat something and look at a few planes. We did so and at 14.00LT we were inside an Airbus A330-300 bound to the US. After a 1 hour delay for pushback and start up due to excessive traffic (our flight was number 35 for push and start) we were able to taxi to the runway and takeoff bound to paradise. Once again a pretty uneventful flight, still, all of us had PTV's and we watched quite a few movies, had some nice meals and tried to sleep a little bit more. At 18.35LT at Orlando (23.35 in Lisbon) our aircraft touched the Orlando's Airport runway and after a few minutes the group was off the plane and on to the customs and immigration officers. All was cleared in a matter of half an hour and after catching the train to the main terminal we collected the bagagge and decided to go on and rent a car.
General View of the Impala.
Chevy's Engine. V6 with 3900cc and 240bhp.
After searching around and discussing prices we settled on for a month rental on a red Chevrolet Impala, a real american car with automatic gear box and a V6 with 3.9L and 240bhp, quite appropriate for the adventure ahead. Loading the car was the hardest part, considering we are four guys and each one of us has 3 bags. Doing the math we had to carry 12 bags so as you might understand it was quite an adventure to load the Impala. Nevertheless after a 15 minutes Tetris game the loading was complete. It was time to head to the hotel after spending 3 hours inside the airport taking care of all the things mentioned above. With no map and a GPS with no satellite signal we hit the road to the unknowned address of our hotel! The only thing that was working right and was setting the pace was the latin music that the radio station was playing. Windows wide open to feel the 30ºCelsius with 90% humidity and light warm rain and the radio blasting to set the mood, the chevy was on the move. With a big load on intuition and an even bigger load of luck we made it to the hotel in less than 15 minutes and checked in right away to unload the car and take a bath. You might think the day was over but not at all, after a quick pit stop the group was on the move again to hit a burger king on Orange Avenue since our stomachs were aching for food. I decided on a $7.49 medium american double whopper which almost looked like a king size portuguese burger king meal.
Burger King Menu.
With a full stomach a need for a BUD (Budweiser american beer) arose and we hit the Orlando night for the first time. Prior to hitting the party area we went for a ride along Orlando downtown with no particular destination, just to sightsee the areas and then, once a destination was determined it took us 20 minutes to reach it. The Universal city walk on the Universal Studios was the place, it looked appropriate since the car rental employee recommended that to us. To say the truth we got there a little late and it looked a little bit empty but we did not enter the clubs and discos (which seemed to have clientele) and decided to get a beer and strolle around the city walk. At 2 o'clock in the morning the BUD was up and it was time to get back to the hotel to recharge for the next day.

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