Sunday, December 11, 2016

The Last Mileage Run of 2016 Part 3: Miami Elemental

So, here we are again friends.  Jet setting, jet lagging.  I can't honestly say it's going poorly, even though for all intents and purposes one could say not much has gone right, but as you will see, that's a vast oversimplification.

We were supposed to be winding our way into downtown Quito in a cab about right now, hoping our driver understood where we needed to go, and further hoping we actually ended up there.  I hear the Andes are lovely this time of year, or something.

Which brings me to the point I should be making about the disconnected nature of mileage running.  It's not about the destination, it's about the journey, and how bizarrely you can route it so it takes forever to get there and back.  So, does it matter all that much that we ended up with one night in Miami, and one in Quito?  Well, yes, but not all that much.  Also, what the heck was I going to do about it really?
I feel like I should have Bingo already.
As it ended up we touched down in MIA a full three hours late.  Didn't even get to play the 'maybe I can make it if we taxi fast and I do my best road runner impression through the D gates.'  I was resigned to my fate, and that always makes it the tiniest bit easier.  Rebooked on the flight for the morning, and promised a hotel accommodation on AA's tab, so once again, roll with it. 

Well, now what?  After a tour of a couple stops at lounges to unwind, we headed out to the hotel.  Now, I should preface this by saying that I've had a recent horrific hotel accommodation story involving family travel, $800 in voucher incentive, a hurricane, and the most depressing timeshare resort I've ever seen.  So, suffice to say, I was a little skeptical. 

Thankfully, the hotel of choice was the Element, which is to the Westin as the Aloft is to the W.  If you followed that, well done.  It wasn't scenic, and came complete with a 7ft security fence surrounding the property, but it was clean and fresh inside, the rooms were ready, and most importantly FREE. 
Element by Westin (TM)

My one criticism, and it turned out to be kinda a big one, is that this hotel doesn't exist.  At least not when the Uber app is concerned.  It took us until the next morning, and about four failed attempts, to sort out what was happening.  So, the moral of the story is- drop your own pin. 

Anyhow, there are moments along the way in any of these trips where it would be so easy after a long day of travel to just hibernate in the hotel, catatonic and watching the weather channel.  However, mileage running, if it's not purely about miles, is about experiences. So...out in to the humid, windy Miami night we go...

More soon,


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