Friday, March 03, 2006

On to Philadelphia

Barely a week home from Australia, and I'm on my way to Philadelphia. I've never been, so I'm excited to see a new place, and meet up with an old friend. Debbie and I suffered through our first years of teaching together at Astoria High School. It should be apparent from my current job that I wasn't clearly not cut out for teaching, but Debbie's stuck with it ... modified the career a bit both in geographic location and specialty, but she's still teaching.

So, the trip is off to a pretty horrible start. The flight I'd chosen left PDX at around 10 pm, and arrived in Philadelphia at around 10 am, and ... quite importantly, didn't lay over in Vegas. But, when I went to book it there was a cheaper flight available, cheaper by around $70 ... $70 that I didn't want to pony up. So instead I chose a flight that would be a little more tight to get to, but still possible. I should also mention that I've never driven myself to the airport, and therefore never needed to park in the long-term lot.

Naturally it took longer to get to the airport than I'd anticipated. Because I'd stopped to return a borrowed dvd recorder at Rie & John's place in Portland, I tried to find the parking lot from the directions I'd printed, and got lost. So I ended up coming into the airport from a different direction. The only sign I saw for the long term parking pointed in a direction that didn't take me anywhere. Eventually I found the budget parking ... and happily the shuttle bus came immediately! ... but I was still in a huge rush. No line at security, so I breezed through in minutes. Got to the gate just in time ... and couldn't find my cell phone to turn it off! Yes, I've lost my cell phone.

Just overheard a conversation in this horrible little smoky bar in the Vegas airport ... in which a belligerent American (oh my god, he just said he was from Oregon ... he's really embarrassing) asked a Canadian guy "so what's up with Canadian TV. I mean, Kids In The Hall, Strangers With Candy ... That's not funny!" And I just have to take a moment to strongly disagree. With that, and pretty much everything he said after that.

Anyway, things to learn from this experience:
  • Don't cut travel deadlines so close. Leave earlier if necessary, don't plan on running errands when you really don't have the time, if you've never been to the (airport, parking garage, etc.) allow a little extra time.
  • Never layover in Las Vegas. Unless you're both a smoker and a gambler.
  • To soften a little on the previous statement ... if you're going to be in need of free wireless, and don't mind the smoke, there is a bar in LAS ~ The Budweiser Brew House I think ~ that has free wireless.
  • Don't be so cheap. I could have saved myself a lot of grief for about $70.

And now, on to Philadelphia from Las Vegas.

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