08 October 2011

In Miami

It’s 12:30pm here in Miami and it’s raining cats, dogs, birds, bugs, elephants. What a downpour, with lightning and thunder to boot. We can only hope that it passes in the next hour or so as our flight is scheduled to leave at 2:00pm. I haven’t seen any flights depart now for about 20 minutes, but then again, I can’t see much further than about 200-300 meters.

Passing the time in the airport has been, well, interesting. After arriving at 7:45am and clearing the plane, Joanna and I cleaned ourselves up after what can only be described as a rough and uncomfortable flight. With on-again, off-again sleep throughout, I think I had about 3 hours, and Joanna only 1. We went for breakfast at Chili’s and had scrambled eggs from a carton, some weird cinder-like sausage, and fried toast. Apparently even toasters are too much trouble – so just throw it on the grill with everything else.
After eating we went to check in with LAN airlines for our next leg, but no one was there. To pass the time, we trolled a few stores then went for a joy ride on the moving sidewalks followed by a shuttle train to the rental cars. That was fun...for about 10 minutes! We did a bit (2 minutes) of birding from the train and picked up 4 species. We then scanned from the airport windows an area comprised mostly of industrial buildings and construction areas. We did spot a few additional species, of which two were lifers for Joanna: Boat-tailed Grackle and Fish Crow. We also spotted Common Grackle, Laughing Gull, Merlin, European Starling, Rock Pigeon, Cattle Egret, Northern Mockingbird, and Eurasian Collared-Dove.
We browsed a few more stores and I picked up a small Altec Lansing external speaker for my iPod so that I can broadcast bird calls, or at the very least, so that Joanna and I can listen to them simultaneously without having to share a pair of earbuds. We then proceeded to security and went to our gate to wait out the final 1.5 hours.  Joanna’s gone for snacks, but it has been more than 30 minutes since she left – hope she returns soon – I’m thirsty!
In the time it’s taken to write this posting, the sky has begin to break and the rain has mostly subsided. Next post will be from Quito, Ecuador. Yeah.
Happy Birding!