The Traveling Steve's

Another work week in Baltimore

My last couple posts were about our July 4th weekend trip to Mendoza, Argentina, where we had an outstanding time.  Like the recent Africa trip we were on, I still have a couple posts left to do on Mendoza, but as time stops for no one, I’m continuing on with my current blog updates.

We got back from Mendoza Wednesday morning, and I had the rest of work week as home office.   We had a wonderful trip, and fortunately the long haul flight from Santiago, Chile to Miami was much, much, better than the flight down.  Fortunately we made it back with all 18 bottles of vino, and none broke in our checked luggage, as we use a special wine carrier for them we had bought in Napa a couple years ago. 


And our souvenirs made it back unbroken as well, including this cute Mendoza mini wine barrel display souvenir.

Of course we did need to buy another wine cooler when we got home as our other 3 coolers are full! Fortunately DOS found a small model that fit perfectly in the built in cabinets where I had a previous wine cooler that had broken a year ago, and had not replaced it yet.

We had a nice weekend back at home, and invited our neighbors over Saturday night for some wine tasting.  As we had just come back from Argentina where Malbec is King, we had a Malbec tasting, with a 2009 Malbec we had gotten in Chile last year, as well as a new Malbec we just brought home from Argentina.  Although I usually take photos of our home wine tastings, this time I just enjoyed the nice vinos without taking any pics, other than the Malbec bottles we opened to decant.

On Monday morning I flew to Baltimore where I’m working this week.  I flew Jet Blue Airlines, and as I always do when flying them, paid an extra surcharge (a minimal $35) for the Even More Space, which provides more legroom in the first five rows of the cabin, as well as early boarding. Most people don’t do this, so you have plenty of time to store your luggage, and occasionally an empty seat next to you.  I love Jet Blue, although I don’t fly them that often due to limited routes, but in this case it was nonstop from Orlando to Baltimore.

As luck would not have it, a family of five got ‘upgraded’ at the last minute to my row and the row in front of me, including a screaming lap child sitting next to me. Fortunately the lead Flight Attendant saw my misery and asked if I’d like to move to a different row.  I went to row 1 and had the entire row to myself!  Thank you!   I really do love Jet Blue; they offer free wifi (which I pay $50 a month on American), free Direct TV and music, and while it’s all coach seating, the slight upgrade charge for Even More Space, offers as much leg room as most domestic carrier’s First Class section, if not the width or enhanced service.  Although Jet Blue does offer complimentary snacks and non-alcoholic drinks.

This week I stayed at the Hyatt Place BWI Airport, which was good, but not as good as my previous stay recently. When I checked in, I had a bit of a wait at 3pm, and then when I went to my room I opened the closet to hang my clothes, and a man’s clothes were hanging there, along with his shoes and backpack.  Oooops; a clean but still occupied room.  I switched to another room on another floor, and later found out the glass shower doors were stuck together via the metal brackets, and the water sprayed all over the floor.  It took the hotel two days to fix this issue, but eventually it got resolved. The room itself was typical of the Hyatt Place Hotels, with the large room and wrap-around sofa.

I worked downtown Baltimore this week, and could not believe the traffic into and inside the city.  I lived in the suburbs there almost 20 years ago, but it has definitely become much worse, and not the friendliest or cleanest city either.  I did take a few photos outside walking around while I was heading to lunch or walking to work from the parking garage in the mornings.  Other than that, my work week was busy, and uneventful.

I had dinner most nights at the Ruby Tuesday’s next door to the hotel which was a quick and stress-free walk, unlike the drive into the city.

I fly back to Orlando tomorrow afternoon (Friday) and am already looking forward to the weekend.  On Saturday Steve (DOS) and I are staying at the Orlando Hyatt Convention Center, and going to Capital Grille for dinner, as they have their annual Generous Pour event going on now.

So that’s about it for the week; I’ll finish up Mendoza and Africa as I catch up.  Happy almost Friday!  A goodnight selfie photo with a Winnie-the-Pooh like doll in the hotel lobby.  Good night from Baltimore!





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