You are in a twisty maze of passages, all alike.

Way back in the early 1970’s, before the InterNet, there existed a text based game for computers, I think I had it on my Apple ][. The game’s name was Colossal Cave Adventure. Back in those days file names were limited to 8 characters, so the name was shortened to Adventur. Most of us know of it under this shortened name.The setting started in a forest and the object was to move through twisting tunnels and caves picking up goodies along the way and finding your way out.

Now move forward about 40 years 2014 when I met just one of these situations. you may have been in one of these ‘games’ too. It was a couple of weekends ago. I had flown to Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport (ATL) and rented a car for a quick trip to a wedding in Gadsdon, Alabama, and return the next day. To set the stage a bit more, The flight was boarding about noon. The drive back from Gadsdon took about two and a half hours. With the TSA slowing down things at the airport this meant we had to be there about 10am, leave Gadsdon about 7:30. Still not too bad. But the wedding reception went late into the night. I wasn’t in the best shape for solving Adventure Game puzzles with heavy, fast traffic on my bumper in a strange car.

So where does the Adventure Game come into play? Have you tried to find Rental Car Return at ATL? That’s where I met up with the twisty maze of passages, all alike. We had our GPS point the way to the airport, then tried to follow the Rental Car Return signs. After the better part of an hour (which we didn’t have to spare) I reset it to take us to one of the rental agencies off the airport. They tried to give me directions, the same as I’d been following. I said NOm that wouldn’t work! Finally they shrugged and one of the people behind the desk, looking like she had nothing else to do, said she’s lead us. So we started following, not an easy task at any airport, and almost impossible at ATL.

When we came up to one intersection which we’d been through many times, she signaled right – the same as we’d done before. But instead of turning right at a sign says to “Rental Car Return Stay Right, as we’d done, she drove straight ahead. . What it should have said is “Rental Car Return Straight ahead in the right lane“.

I’d been caught in an Adventure Game, and like the old game what I needed to get me out was to call out Xyzzy and I would have been magically transported out of the endless maze.

Oh, a couple side notes:

  • We were only an hour behind our original ETA, made it through TSA and were at the gate with time enough to grab a quick bit to eat.
  • The wedding was my youngest Grandson’s, at J&D Farms, with reception in the barn. A scenic setting.

Unless you have to drop passengers at ATL’s drop off I suggest you get out your GPS and locate the Car Rental Return. Then find the ‘back way’ into it. Probably the route you took out that bypassed the airport all together. If you turn left out of the rental facilities, away from the airport. You’ll be on Global Gateway Connection, and most probably Riverdale Rd. These are the roads my GPS used to lead us away from the airport and on our way to Gadsdon.

Denver International Airport (DIA) rental car facility is a good distance from the terminal, though I haven’t had problems finding it I know people who have. To find that one, get off Pena Blvd at Tower Rd, going left if you are heading toward the airport, then take a left at E81st Ave. Don’t get tempted to get of at Co-470, it’s a toll road and doesn’t go where you want to.

So my word of advice is to take a good look when you pick up your rental, don’t wait till the last-minute to try to find a home for it.


About Mike

I'm an avid bicyclist, that also enjoys Kayaking, Nature Photography, Cross Country Skiing and Geocaching. There's nothing more boring than sitting indoors in "good" weather.
This entry was posted in airport, ATL, Hartsvield-Jackson, rental return, Xyzzy and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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