Sunday, July 03, 2011

Venezuela Day 7 and 8

Bright and early we rolled out of bed Friday at 3:30am and were in vans for a 3.5 hour ride to the beach with our team and the boys from Project Jonas. The conditions of the roads give the appearance of having been carpet bombed, but they have not had a war.


The driving is amazing in itself, something between Mad Max and Deathrace 2000. Many treat red lights like yellows. Stop and then go before it goes green. Intersections are games of chicken. Motorcycles split lanes even with opposing traffic and hardly anyone wears a helmet or anything remotely looking like gear. Honestly despite my years of experience racing, I do not think I would be interested in driving in Venezuela.



When we arrived at the beach it was gorgeous emerald blue water, crashing waves, and palm trees. We boarded a few 18 foot boats and rode for 20 minutes out to Cayo Sombrero Morrocoy
Venezuela. The first thing we saw when we stepped off the boats onto the island were iguanas feasting on bags of trash.
                                     

 Locals were renting chairs and small canopies while others were selling lobsters and varieties of seafood. We sampled some and it was amazing. So we purchased some shrimp and feasted in the shade while reading and relaxing.




The boys snorkeled and played football in the surf and a good time was had by all. Despite SPF 70 and shade, some of us still ended up sunburned. We returned to the farm for dinner and tearful goodbyes and then headed to the hotel for showers and rest.



Saturday we were up at 7am for breakfast and a brief team meeting then off to the airport. Our day of flying started out a bit off schedule with our first flight almost 2 hours delayed.



Our three hour lay over in Caracass turned into more like 45 minutes. And we had to get our luggage from the domestic carousel and over to the international check-in and then go thru security again. At the gate, we had to do security again. The best I understand, TSA does not trust Venezuela's security so they require the airlines to do their own for flights headed to the states.

When we landed in Miami, we had the slow process of going through customs. I was surprised how many folks were lined up for customs at 10pm on a Friday. Then we had to pickup our luggage from the carousel, carry it thru a section of customs and then pass it off to another area where the inspected it and then gave it back to the airlines.


We finally landed in Atlanta a few minutes after midnight. We retrieved our luggage and met up with Dash Transport for the ride home. We arrived to two very anxious dogs greeting our arrival home around 2am.

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