Feb. 27, 2009, On the Road
Today, Flat Stanley and I made the long journey home to America.
There is an airport in Saltillo, but it's very small, and the only
US-bound flight is to Houston, which is of no use to me,
since there's no flight from Houston to Champaign.
So, Flat Stanley and I took a bus from Saltillo to
Monterrey. Monterrey is a very large city, and it has
a reasonable airport with a direct flight to Dallas,
which is perfect for me, since there is one afternoon
flight from Dallas to Champaign.
Below is a photo of our bus, and a photo of Flat Stanley
in his seat.
The bus ride to Monterrey is on a 2-lane highway, not quite
as big as a US Interstate. The scenery... well, the scenery
is mountains and desert. I've started to like the
mountains and the desert. I could almost always see the
mountains when I was in Saltillo, regardless of where
I was. And I began to like the stark and barren landscape
that led up to the mountains. I took a few photos
from the bus window, so you can see what I mean.
It's a bit like the scenery from an old western I think (except
for the highway and traffic).
In the Monterrey airport, Flat Stanley made
friends with the folks from American airlines.
They seemed to like the little gringo, who
has earned the nickname El Plano Loco.
After we checked in, we made our way to the
gate to wait (you'll see Flat Stanley waiting
in one of the photos below), but not before
passing by nearly every souvenir shop in
El Plano Loco had a few pesos that
were burning a hole in his paper pockets, and
he really wanted to buy something to remember
the trip by. If you look closely, you'll
find him in each of the three photos below
of airport souvenir shops.
In the end, he chose to buy a liquid souvenir.
This was a mistake. El Plano Loco had forgotten
that you are not allowed to bring liquids
onto the airplane. So, he had to drink his
souvenir just outside of security. I took a photo
of El Plano Loco in the security line and I learned
that it is forbidden to photograph Mexican
security. A friendly Federale helped
me to erase the photo from my digital
Flat Stanley thought that was pretty funny.
Flat Stanley was feeling pretty bold when we boarded,
and he offered to help the pilots with their preflight
checklists. The pilots seemed to appreciate his
help. After he was sure that everything was OK,
and that we could safely take off, Flat Stanley
took his seat (and fastened his seat belt, to be
It was a long day for Flat Stanley, and he was
happy to clear customs and be back in the USA
(we also learned that it is forbidden to photograph
the US Border Agent who checks passports).
Below is a photo of DFW (that's airport code
for Dallas Fort Worth), and finally, a photo
of Flat Stanley safely back at home, tucked into bed
for the night. He has become quite fond of the
University of Illinois blanket. I think you may need
to buy one for him.
I hope all is well back in Indiana.
I think that it's time for Flat Stanley to come
home, so tomorrow I'll take him to the post office.
The short trip back to Southern Indiana should be
no trouble for him after his long adventures in