ON THE ROAD AGAIN
SAN JUAN – ST. MAARTEN (May 24, 2012) – Flying high above the Caribbean Sea from San Juan to St. Maarten, I am about to give my editor the shock of her life.
Being notoriously late arriving at airports to board flights, I am similarly tardy in meeting my weekly deadline for this column.
So much so that I had a sneaky suspicion about a year or more ago deadlines were changed to a day earlier purportedly for all scribes.
No one will confirm it but I can’t help thinking the earlier deadline was purely for me and another “in-flight writer” who will remain nameless.
Generally, I’ve been good at meeting the new deadlines.
But this week, I am being extra good because of the holiday weekend and the need for non-breaking news stories to be submitted early to avoid a mad scramble to get the paper out next week.
Truth be told, it’s always easier to get this column out when above terra firma, since there are few distractions in the clouds.
Like most of you, I am most productive when emails aren’t flying back and forth and the cell phone isn’t buzzing with calls, text messages or BBMs.
Yes, I am one of those folks who practices cell phone etiquette – the phone vibrates, it doesn’t ring aloud!
The morning started pretty early at JFK Airport where I boarded JetBlue Airways’ service to San Juan on a full flight.
Even though I had what appeared to be a 7-foot athlete sitting in the center seat next to me, the airline’s Even More seat contributed to a mostly smooth experience.
Especially as I have become a wee wider since my own athletic exploits as a national tennis junior player in Barbados.
From San Juan, we are now about to descend onto St. Maarten where I hope to see some happy tourists “drinking a liquor” in that famous bar that sits on the runway.
Then, it’s off to a meeting I hope, and aboard a boat to hit the British isle of Anguilla for the first ever Lit Fest, featuring the likes of Terry McMillian, Hill Harper, Sheryl Lee Ralph and host of other local, regional and international authors and actors.
My choice of airline is typically American Airlines, but as I reflect on today’s JetBlue experience, the airline has done an excellent job serving the Caribbean over the years.
With American Eagle threatening to suspend operations from the San Juan hub next year, these Brazilian Embraer jets will take on an increasingly important role for island nations which rely on traffic over San Juan for their economic development.
It’s now time to turn off the laptop as my 35-minute flight is about to end – and I don’t want to get screamed at. See you next week when hopefully I’ll get to report on … oops, I just got my warning. I’m gone!