Friday, July 29, 2005

road trip

15 hours of pain and suffering at the hands of construction workers everywhere.

Before the big move I made a “short” road trip from Northern Kentucky to Florida. The entire journey down reeked of the torture that only interstate 75 can provide.

As I sit on the plane making my way back to Kentucky I can only think: “thank god I’m not driving.”

Maybe I’m getting old, but I simply can’t handle a road trip like I used to.

Georgia, I hate to say, is an unknown level of hell. It is the longest and most irritating state I that I have had the misfortune of visiting. Atlanta is a disaster. The highways are 7 lanes across in each direction. Thousands of poor souls enter the motorways daily, thousands of people fighting to use the same exits.

They cross their fingers in single passenger cars, hoping not to be caught in the carpool lane.

And they love to honk their horn.

I expect the song of the car horn in New York City.
I welcome its shattering screams in Chicago.
I expect its existence on the oily and dirty black topped paths of Detroit.

However, when traveling the lush, peaceful highways of Georgia the bleating of a car’s horn is just another reminder of the multitude of methods we pollute this world.

I thought the south was supposed to be slow paced.

I was passed by an old couple, wrinkled and hunched in their painfully aged Lincoln Towncar. They traveled along at the brisk pace of just over 95 mph.

I felt a stereotype shatter at my feet.

As the pieces of assumption glittered on the floorboards a wave of guilt and shame washed over me.

They passed me on the right.

No doubt muttering “damn young people”

I hate Georgia.

real estate

This morning I was awoken by shrill ring of the doorbell.
9 in the morning.

This is vacation, if I get up before noon it’s cause for celebration.

At the door is an old woman with a perplexed look on her face.

”Who are you?” she asked.

Isn’t that supposed to be my question?

“I am a friend of the owner of this house… and you are?”

“I am the real estate agent trying to rent the house out. I have a showing this morning. Why are you here? Didn’t anyone tell you?”

The owner of the house is a pilot. He cannot regularly answer his phone.
This woman is so flustered I get the feeling she is trying to remember if she even called. Making mental notes to check her call logs.

She asks if she can come in.

I stand bleary eyed. Still in my pj’s, I invite her in.
I need to put on a bra and more substantial pants.

When I get out of my bedroom, after adorning clothing and cleaning the place up a bit, I see this aged tornado zooming about the living room attempting to create the illusion of a completely uninhabited house.

She was hiding our shoes under the couch.

I cleaned the necessities. The place looked great. I let her play with insignificant details. Constantly muttering how sorry she was that she ruined our entire vacation.

Very egotistical notion, if you ask me. The idea that she alone can ruin my trip to the beach is ludicrous.

She attempted to banish my jacket to an uninviting kitchen cabinet

Ah well.
Though I would much rather have finished the dream I was having which starred Captain Jack Sparrow and his big ship than wake up to a tiny wrinkled agent of the unstable real estate gild, it happens. It made me get dressed at a reasonable hour and get out of the house. Good excuse for a little window shopping.

the journey home

Now, I am several miles in the air awaiting clearance to land in Atlanta.
I previously mentioned Atlanta, and noted it was something to the liking of a hell dimension.

Evil has once again reared its ugly head.
This flight was delayed 45 mins from Melbourne to Atlanta due to a storm hovering over the city of my pain.

Now in the air, circling Atlanta, we have run into a second problem. The storm has grown to such intensity that the airport has closed to all traffic.

We stayed in the holding pattern for over a half an hour.

The pilots voice over head mentions that the storm is showing no signs of retreat and the fuel level is getting lower and lower.

Very tactful move, “This is the pilot speaking, we are running out of gas. Enjoy your flight.”

The girl on my right is in tears.

We are being diverted to Savannah.
Now, as we circle Savannah, the pilot informs us of a storm growing here as well.
We will, however, be able to land shortly.

Check that, a storm has opened up over Savannah. Charleston is our new destination.
This has got to be some kind of cruel joke.

We have been in the air for 3 hours. The flight had a scheduled time of 1 hour 6 minuets.

As the pilot informs us of this unlikely turn of events a smattering of uncomfortable laughs and groans echo around the cabin.

All of Georgia has rebelled against me and is forcing a flight to an entirely new state.

I just want to go home. Wait, homeless.
I just want to go to someone else’s couch.

We land in Charleston. The gates are all full, the plane cannot get anywhere near the airport.

The child behind me starts crying.
Good times.

Two hours later the fuel truck pulls up beside the plane. A roar of applause, started by yours truly fills the cabin.

Pirates of Caribbean is playing on my laptop. The child behind me stops crying and begins to watch the movie. I look around and people in several rows are craning their necks to watch the movie along with me.
Thank you iBook, thank you Johnny Depp.

Eventually the plane takes off and moves us slowly into Atlanta.

Landing takes awhile but is otherwise uneventful.
We have, of course missed our connecting flight to Dayton, Ohio. (This is an airport about an hour from where I live, but the prices were better.)

We board the next flight a beautiful 6 hours after getting on the first.

The flight to Dayton, estimated time of 1 hour 15 minuets, takes 2 hours 30 minuets.
We are relived by the speedy flight.

At the moment of landing in Dayton we gave a cheer. We are almost home.
Nothing can go wrong now!

Famous last words.

The man who is to pick us up from the airport and deliver us to our comfortable homes is not here. He went to the wrong airport. He is waiting in Cincinnati.

Another hour of fun times in the airport.
I will never get home.
I will never get to someone else’s couch.

Hello adult with a career!
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