Newark Travel Blog› entry 2 of 12 › view all entries
After a perfect flight from copenhagen to Newark I had my first encounter for many years with the control system in to USA and it it reminded me loads of the one I remembered from China; besides that I felt the American was much slower.
We had all filled out the application form on the internet and still we had to fill it out again in the plane. If there is something i dislike in general then it bis double work; it is pure waste, but my guess is that occupy a lot of administrative employees and that is what USA need these days. Besides that the custom papers had to be filled out for another queue.
I felt I was lucky to get fast out of the plane after the flight but we all ended up anyway in the same long queue. I was not allowed to display the manitude of it because we were not allowed to use mobile phones or digital cameras. I meassured the queue to approximately 800 meters and it lasted almost an hour to get to the control area.
Here I was greeted by a friendly woman who looked in my papers and asked me what my purpose and duration was of my stay. That was just before I ended up in a huge database with all my finger prints and the iris; welcome to the land of the big brother; I was laughing inside thinking of Will Smith in Enemy of the State. It is so easy for an American to enter Europe, maybe we make an US queue in the European airports!
I passsed the control and went down for my luggage that was spinning around on the belt for almost an hour; talk about shaken not stirred. After that it was time for the next queue; the custom control which was a queue that only lasted 10 minutes and consisted primarily of collecting the last paper that was filled out in the plane. Finally I was back in the States; something I had looked forward to in years, it had been too long since I was here the last time.
Time for the next queue; I had deccided already long time ago to take a taxi to the hotel on Manhattan even though a train was much cheaper, but I just wanted to get my stuff to the hotel and walk the streets and meet my good Belgian friend Maxime who I knew was in New York the same time as me. I had briefly seen him in Brussels four weeks earlier otherwise it was back in the end of 2009.
I got into the cab and laughted inside about the soft suspention of the car; I was back in the States for reel. The weather was fantasic and the cab driver had all the windows down which was truly nice; after the artficial air in the plane and the warm smelling air in the airport. I could see the skyline of New York for the first time in my life and I was excited.
The traffic went well until we came close to Manhattan and the Lincoln Tunnel; here everything blocked completely and so it stayed for an hour. I was in no hurry but the poor guy driving the taxi lost his temper a couple of times trying to improve the speed in which he could drop me off. He did what he could in order to get me fast to my hotel.
We started to talk and he was another nice guy doing his job. He turned the radio on and I was back in American commercial land again, something that I always loved. There were 3 themes on the radio; one third music, one third commercials and one third crime reporting. After 1 hour and 30 minutes I finally airrived at my hotel; the last block I knew where I was because I had walked the streets on google maps - how cool is that?