Hartsfield Sky Train (179th new thing).

October 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

On Day One Hundred Seventy-Nine I rode the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport SkyTrain for the first time. The shuttle travels between the newish modern-looking car rental area adjacent to the airport and the terminals. After I dropped off the minivan that had been my main means of travel for the past week, I boarded the nearly empty rail system to head towards my ride who would meet me by baggage claim.

The SkyTrain looks like a cross between the tram that goes between terminals at the ATL airport and MARTA, Atlanta’s mass-transit system. I guess the two of them are similar enough anyway. I sat down at the back of the car and gazed out the window for the four minute journey into the airport.

It was intensely peaceful, in a stretch of several chaotic, busy days weeks. I love airports and the expectation of travel you get when you enter (or leave) one. I remember going with my dad several times to meet my mom returning from a trip to England to visit family. This was before 9/11 and all the extra security measures. You could ride the underground tram between terminals without any sort of boarding pass. My dad, brother, and I raced down the moving sidewalks at ten on a balmy summer evening, no one stopping us as we passed both security guards and pilots. The international concourse (E) always had the best food, so we would go there for a snack.

The people watching nowadays is still pretty amusing, even with limited access to the terminals. Even when I  pick up people from out of town I make up stories about those filing off the giant escalators to collect their bags- where they are from, who they are meeting, why they are in Atlanta.

And now, added to the positive airport memories, I include the calm trip from the rental car drop off to Terminal South. I could probably ride those trains all day, back and forth, just watching.


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