Trip Report: Live from Butler County, Alabama

In Adventure, Uncategorized by scott

We’re trying out some of Alaska Airlines‘ new service: Seattle-Atlanta.
It’s been 20 years since I’ve flown through Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. And Atlanta’s airport has grown since then. Alaska’s once-daily afternoon service compliments Delta‘s own service. In fact, the Alaska flight comes into a Delta gate. The two airlines cooperate on code-share agreements, so this comes as no surprise.
Both flights (ANC-SEA and SEA-ATL) were completely full. As expected the red-eye crowd for our outbound flight was pretty subdued. Security was a breeze, even when traveling with the whole family and a couple of rifles.
In Seattle, we wandered around the shops (pictured below: “Fireworks”) in the Pacific Marketplace food court, before ducking into Alaska’s Board Room for some delicious espresso.  I brought the family in on my Board Room membership. If you travel quite a bit, I think it’s worth the extra money to belong. I’ll be interested to see which airport club we can use in Atlanta prior to our return flight. If Alaska does not have its own club, they make arrangements with another airline to use their club.
Everything worked like clockwork on arrival in Atlanta. We made our way through the tunnel on the train to baggage claim. Then, we took the train over to the car rental center where we picked up our Hertz car. I’d pre-purchased the rental on Priceline. The week-long rental for a full-size car was $227, including all taxes, fees and Priceline’s extra profit. Still, it’s less than Hertz’s retail rate of $450 for the same car.
As it turned out, the brand-new, snappy Madza SUV (CX-9, I think) had several electrical problems. I ended up exchanging the car in Montgomery, Alabama. The Hertz people could not have been nicer. Now, I’m driving a big, dumb Grand Marquis with lots of trunk space. Perfect. HA!
Unlike Anchorage, rural Alabama does not have very good internet coverage. My in-laws’ Hughes.net satellite service is dreadful. It’s up, it’s down, it’s slow and unpredictable. A pox on them.  To come up to periscope depth for cell phone and internet service, I made the 20-mile drive to the county seat in Greenville, Alabama. I saw five deer and one possum on the way in.  Sweet Home Alabama. But the food is delicious! And YES, I ate my collards. And my butter beans. Roast beef, gravy, biscuits and mashed potatoes. YUM!

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