Day 1 Ė Sunday October 26th
As my previous trip report made mention of, I am lucky enough to head to the USA fairly regularly.
So it was that a scant 6 weeks after my 3000 mile road trip around New England, I found myself heading once again to the shores of the new world.
After a month in West Africa, my business flight deposited me at Heathrow terminal 5 at 8.30am on Sunday morning.
The previous month, on the way out of the country, I had registered myself for the IRIS recognition immigration system as it reduces the time taken to enter the UK to basically 0 so I was soon back in the country.
After a quick breakfast in the arrivals lounge, I headed back through passport control and spent a couple of hours in the departure lounge waiting on my flight to Washington DC.
Unlike last time Iím travelling economy, so no reports of flat beds and decent food!!
The flight to DC is fairly short however and I spend most of it asleep.
Itís been 7 years since I was last in Washington, but judging by the arrivals hall at Dulles, precious little has changed, I donít think the airport at the nationís capital has even seen a coat of paint in that time.
With the exception of Atlanta, I have never queued for so long to get through immigration into the USA, 110 minutes after joining the line, I finally get to the front.
A barrage of questions later (The INS guy didnít like the fact that I was returning so soon and had African visas in my passport) and I was through.
Flying with hand luggage only, there was no risk of bags going missing this time, so I was straight to the Washington Super Shuttle desk to sort out my ride into town.
The Super Shuttle service is a great way of getting from airports to hotels Ė for typically half the cost of a cab they will take a group of people who are staying in the same area and use a large passenger van to drop them off in turn Ė massively faster than using public transport (especially from Dulles) itís only slightly slower than a cab and cost $29
I had booked accommodation in a bed and breakfast called The Adams Inn in Adams Morgan Ė due to it being election time, the major hotels were charging upwards of $400 a night and as I didnít want a hostel, a B&B seemed the best idea Ė trip advisor also rated this one highly.
Trip advisor were right, Iíve lucked out here with a fantastic en-suite basement room with a sofa, desk, fridge etc. The owner met me upon arrival and told me about the free breakfast and free high speed Internet so I was very happy I chose the place.
As it was Sunday, my initial plan was to head to a sports bar to catch an NFL game, but thanks to the delays at immigration, I was too late.
A quick bite to eat and then I was away to the land of nod.