Bauston…just (With apologies to Friends of the Earth)

Its just turned 18:00 hrs local time on 06/09/2012. Right now, by rights, you should all be tucked up in bed. I am. At least while I cool off. Weather hear in Bauston (don’t blame me – that’s how it sounds) is  an average 26 degrees with 83% humidity. We need a new word in the English Language for sticky. How about – turbosticky? Nevermind. A breath of wind – only from the air conditioning in the stores we visited. The unit we have hear in Room 114 of the Holiday Inn is as big as diesel engine and twice as loud. But oh, it is sooo good.

Yesterday’s travel/travais to the USA was a game of two halves. Travel through the UK by Virgin Train coupled with the ‘amped up’ London Underground Paralympic Service – the actual journey time from Crewe Station to Heathrow Terminal 5 SURVEY SAYS: 3 hours and 4 minutes. BA0239 from Heathrow Terminal 5 even left bang on time at 19:30 and landed at Boston Logan Airport at 09:40 EST – a journey of 6 hours and 35 minutes.  I (Rohan) flew in a Boeing 747-400 for the first time and in fact after over 7 years of regular flying, it was the first real aircraft I have ever flown in. Because? It makes all the right noises and feels like its almost run out of runway on take-off.

For detail buffs amongst you, the inflight movies watched were a second look at Ridley Scott’s ‘Prometheus’ (I enjoyed it more than I liked it the second time so FU Julian) and the laughably gung-ho alien invasion actioner ‘Battleship’ – I know, I’m not proud of it. I was tired. Half cut on free gin and Premium Economy snugglestuff. BA were excellent. Well done Britain….Three cheers for her majesty…hip-hip…CRUMP !

That was the sound of Pookaverse smacking into a brick wall of bureaucracy-gone-bonkers, indifference, lack of organisation and just plain rudeness received at Boston Logan Airport from 09:40EST. We left the Terminal Baggage Area at 02:47 the following morning!?!  Spending 90 minutes in a queue of 350 people with initially ONE, I am not fooling around here, ONE immigration officer on duty. Every living soul in that queue needed to be questioned, have finger and thumbs from both hands electronically scanned before access was granted at level 1 of 2 stages.  So on top of the 90 minutes, and because Rohan has a visa issued by the US Authorities,  we were both directed to Level 2 screening.

I spent a further 90 minutes having to rummage through my laptop for further information for my original AND LEGALLY ISSUED non-immigration B2 visa  with 3 separate immigration officers . I seriously thought, as I said to Alison, on a couple of occasions that I would not be granted access and the part of the trip with me in it was over. Not so simply because the Airport authorities believed that my visa was missing what I will qualify as a ‘tick in the box’. In the end, I gave up –  suggesting that as it was now 2.30 EST in the morning  that it was now 07:30 in the morning in London, that the officers contact the US Embassy in London so that he/they/them could voice his/their concerns.  Boom. I was suddenly free to go. Which meant that Alison, also exhausted, could also go. We found our bags unattended on the floor next to the luggage carousel. where they had been for 3 hours. Unattended Luggage. Airport. Mmmm. I don’t know about you, I would be a little ….concerned. A total shambles. Fly to JFK instead.

It felt like I was on a bad reality TV show – as if there has ever been a ‘good’ reality TV show (?) with a similar will he/won’t unnatural dynamic going on. Another tiresome tragedy with the lie detector test in the third act. Just to cap it off, there is now doubt over whether I will be able to reenter the US with my current US-issued Visa in February. So you know what – F**k it!

Don’t need it, don’t want it.

Seriously, have felt quite down for most of today – like I am here in the US illegally. Great start to the trip, eh? Fortunately Alison is a ‘high-wire expert’ and has helped me to transform my original victim mentality into plain defiance. Jobsworth’s will not spoil the trip. I will bounce back in a couple of days. Just for the record, the rudeness extended to the Night Porter at the Holiday Inn Express, Boston. If you read the review on Tripadvisor for this hotel, most negative comments are addressed to the night-time member of staff on duty.

Now, I don’t know about you. But when I read those reviews on Tripadvisor I always try to be balanced in my thinking. To seperate out the facts from the opinions. To view each comment as new information to which judgement and discretion needs to be applied. Maybe the author had set their expectations too high? Maybe the person in the service capacity was having a bad day. I mean, we all have bad days don’t we? Maybe within that night-time member of staff is a creature of beauty struggling to understand itself.

The reviewers are all quite right. He is a total T*at.

The rest of the staff have been excellent. Just don’t eat the cereal that looks like Cheerio’s – it is filthy. I now call the Cereal formerly known as Cheerios: Cheery-byes.  Or more simply. F**king Disgusting!!!

Finally, (Full Bauston picture round tomorrow night chums) Pookaverse has realised that we are travelling during an election year in the US.  There was some bemusement at breakfast as we chuckled into our surrogate cornflakes-with-jordans clusters-with frosties mixed in (go figure) watching the writhing media froth on CNN of Obama’s Democratic nominee selection.

So,  on this theme. And  just to finish this toadstool of a post my lovelies – I have a bit if useless information for you.

Did you know that the Democratic symbol of the donkey originated in Boston? Yes, it’s true. Here is the all the proof you will ever need outside Boston City Hall. Don’t take my word for it, go and have a look yourself 🙂

“…Arkansas 20 votes for the Democratic nominees will not be….”


5 Responses to “Bauston…just (With apologies to Friends of the Earth)”

  1. Terri and Andrew Says:

    Love the donkey pic, treat it well it may be a Guernsey man!!! Sounds like a nightmare getting in to Boston, but cheer up you could have lost you hair like me, in a hair dressing accident! Terri tried trimming the back and ended up slipping, never mind, you could say that now I’m her number one!!!

    Would send a picture but cannot work out how to attach.


  2. Rach Chippendale Says:

    After reading about your hassles at the Airport Bruv, I have pondered what to say for quite some time.
    After great thought and consideration I would say “Tossers – Indeed Fuck Em All right in the eyehole – knobjockeys! xx

  3. Rach Chippendale Says:

    Also just wanted to point out that only a third of Americans actually HAVE a passport so 2 thirds can’t even fly to Canada – go figure????

  4. Anne Says:

    This will be a short one – incase I can’t manage the technology and spend hours typing out my knowledge and wisdom – only to discover it doesn’t extend to getting a comment on your site!!

    Thank goodness for the picture of you smiling on a donkey!! You are on the adventure of a lifetime Rowan – cheer up and don’t let the b*****s grind you down! You’re British for goodness sake!!! Stiff upper lip and all that. Think of Scott of the Antarctic or Livingstone in Africa – you have a responsibility to your nation to spread goodwill, good sense and common decency amongst your fellow men abroad – no matter what they throw at you!!!!

    By the way – the photo is exactly what we need – evidence that you have been somewhere and that you have done something stupid / childish whilst you were there!!!

    Probably missed the Harvard visit – but is that the College in America at the moment who have got a big CHEATING scandel with their students (or is that Stamford?) Sort them out!!

    Have a great time – will respond occasionally as me and e mail don’t get on too well. Do keep us informed about the election – making as many links to the West Wing as you can – obviously!!

    Good luck and great to hear from you.

    • pookaverse Says:

      Oh my God! (Stands up) You’re right (walks to complimentary tea and coffee tray). I am Bloody British/Irish/World Citizen (sips lukewarm broth of leaves and UHT Milk) Arrrrgh, this tastes like NATS PISS (spits out) WHAT THE BLOODY HELLS GOING ON HERE?!?!!??! (rips of recently purchased Boston Celtics Baseball cap) WHAT AM I DOING IN THESE CLOTHES ?!?!?!?!? (in the Background ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ can be faintly heard) I’VE GOT TO GET OUT OF HERE (Looks at the Bill) WHAT IN THE NAME OF GOD ARE ALL THESE ADDITIONAL TAXES?!!!?? WHAT THE BLOODY HELL IS CONVENTION TAX WHEN ITS AT HOME?!?!?!(Rips shirt and trousers off to reveal Union Jack Jockey Shorts) THE COLONIES YOUR MAJESTY, THE COLONIES ARE REVOLTING MA’AM…GOD BLESS YOU…GOD BLESS YOU MA’AM

      Anne? It worked. I am aroused from my childlike slumber in front of the morning news in the breakfast room….MAN BURIED IN BUDWEISER CASKET…SKUNK WITH MAYONNAISE JAR STUCK ON HEAD (Seriously. You could see the skunk scooting around in the background shot of the person being interviewed)

      You have reminded me of some simple home truths. I am indebted and happy 🙂

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