Tuesday, November 09, 2010

The Wonders of Air Travel; The Writin' Life

As promised, I'm going to go over some of the joyous things that happened on my air travel adventures. First of all, when Paul G. and I got to the airport, they cleverly kept changing the gate at which we were supposed to be waiting. Big fun.

When we were finally allowed to get on the plane (I'd rather get IN the plane, thank you), we ended up hanging around for a long, long time. There was some repair work that had been done to the plane, and it required there to be signatures and so on. Those signatures took longer than the first continental congress to come in, I swear. I was ready to get out before we started moving toward the runway.

The plane in question was one of the spiffy (not) MD-90 commuter jets. I have, to anyone who would listen, sung the suck of the MD-88 and MD-90 airplanes. Now, I have nothing against the plane itself. I'm sure it's a perfectly nice aircraft. But when the airlines get done with them, putting about 1/3 too many seats in, they become cattle cars, and I find them deviously uncomfortable.

So, a few deviously uncomfortable hours later, we arrived in Minneapolis/St. Paul. Upon disembarking (I don't de-plane, it's a religious conviction), Paul G. looked back and said the following: "We're gonna have to run!".

And run we did. Paul G. was on the cross country team, the basketball team, and was an 800 meter runner. I played football, wrestled, and threw the shot put. There are reasons for these choices. They stem from basic morphology. Now, I could run a 5:45 mile back in my prime. Wearing a backpack, fifty pounds heavier, after having been squashed into an airplane like a sardine for three hours, eighteen years later...well, let's say I cannot run a 5:45 mile. Or anything approximating it.

With two minutes until the doors closed for good, we were the better part of a half mile away from our gate. Someone yelled, "You can make it!" to us. This was true in Paul's case. As for me, I ended up out of breath, sweating, and at the wrong gate. Despite Paul's best efforts, they would not hold the plane, and we were thus separated. I urge you, gentle readers, to refrain from making judgments on Paul for this. It was unclear when the next open seat would be, and if there would be two on the same plane.

I found myself speaking to a very apologetic gate agent, while I began to regain my breath. I'm afraid that there was some kind of allergen or pollutant in the air at the airport, as I was coughing for the rest of the day, as was Paul. I ended up on a later flight, on an even smaller plane, a CRJ-something or another. This one found me in a seat at the very back of the plane, about nine inches from one of the engines. I could, without exaggeration, look directly into the turbine as it spun. Good fun.

When, at last, I got to Columbus, I took a cab to the hotel. My reasoning skills had by then departed, and I inadvertently tipped the driver ten bucks (50% tip, thanks). Ugh. At least everything else would run smoothly...

Or so I thought, until the morning of the flight back, when I noticed that my flight was scheduled for Tuesday. It was Sunday. Oops. I threw myself on the mercies of the Delta people, and ended up having to pay upwards of $300 extra for the privilege of going on substandard jets, in tight conditions, and generally being miserable for the rest of the day.

Upon arriving in Detroit, where my connection was, I was only about ten minutes in advance of final boarding for my plane to SLC. Of course, I was in C terminal, gate 23, and the gate I needed to get to was as far as humanly possible from there, at A 78. Yeah, 78. I had to run. Again. I had to go to the bathroom with every fiber of my being. I was not able to do so. I love air travel.

To top everything off, the plane I was on for the final leg, an Airbus A330, had a servo motor that kept firing, making an awful grinding noise, right under my seat. And it was another hour before I was able to finally visit the restroom. So that's the story.

On to other things: I've finally got my zombie epic (20K words), "All These Violent Heirlooms" finished. It's with my writer buddy, Julie Frost, getting marked up now. As soon as it's ready, which will likely include being cut in half and sent as two installments, it'll go off to Tales of the Zombie War. I'm looking forward to finally having that one in the public eye (provided that they accept...).

On a side note to that, I just learned that I have the fifth most popular story in the history of the site, with "Those Who Fall in Silence" having enjoyed well over 4,000 hits thus far.

I've also completed rough work on another story, "Hunting Season Again", which I'll need to find a market for in the coming days.

That's about it for now. Look for a video sometime soon, as I have yet to share a good number of my videos, and plan to post some new ones as soon as the weather is nice enough to get a good image of some of my new foolish stunts.

Hope you're well, and take care!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hate airports myself. I don't even like going there to meet someone. I think they must be designed to confuse & frustrate people. looking forward to reading your latest stuff. You do spin a good yarn. Bob