Yesterday I made the long journey home from Spain. I was up at 7:00 AM Madrid time (1:00 AM Cleveland time), and I was home by 9:00 PM Cleveland time (3:00 AM Madrid time). A long day!
The flight from Madrid to Washington Dulles Airport went well. Although we hit a fair amount of turbulence, we arrived only five minutes late. Immigration and customs at Dulles have been streamlined, and it only took about fifteen minutes to get through both. But just as I was beginning to think that Dulles was a model of efficiency, I hit the line to go back through security. I have never seen a line that long for security at any airport! My boarding pass allowed me to use "TSA Pre", the quicker and easier security checkpoint... but there was no "TSA Pre" line there.
The couple that sat next to me on the flight from Madrid had only an hour layover before catching their flight home to Denver. People were allowing them to cut ahead in line, but I still doubt that they made their connection. This is why I am always paranoid about scheduling a layover of at least two hours when I book flights.
I walked a long way to the gate for my flight to Cleveland. Although we boarded on time, we sat at the gate for a while after the scheduled departure time. Then when we were on the runway awaiting our turn to take off, the pilot announced that we would have to go back to the gate. (Apparently a warning light came on.) They were not sure if we would have to deplane or not, but the mechanic was able to resolve the problem in a fairly short amount of time. We did not have to get off the plane. We arrived in Cleveland over an hour late... not a big deal, but by that time I was very weary, and eager to get home.
All in all it was a very good trip. Although I would not rank the three new cities that I visited in Spain as my favorites, they were all very interesting, and I saw some impressive sights. Now I am at home until my next trip... back to Mexico City in November.