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Three score and ten or more

Saturday, January 17, 2009

UTAH day two

It is amazing how differently one day can end up from another.

I awoke from my sleep in the Travelodge without an alarm.  I had left a wake up call for six A M with the desk, but I awoke about ten minutes early, (for those who know me in my dotage, this would almost be alarming --pun intended but so weak no one would catch it) and emerged from my bed without much pain (this is also a little strange, the first ten minutes after I get out of bed are generally the worst minutes of my day because of back pain).

I showered dressed and packed and was in the office to meet the shuttle at 7:00 which was a little late for an 8:20 plane, but I made it, even after a near strip job at the security gate.  I had apparently picked up a ball point pen somewhere that had enough metal to make the gizmo  buzz.  Just as I entered the plane a guy asked me my name. He had, apparently been waiting at the American airlines desk with a wheelchair.  (I could really have used it, I was really pooped.)  I found my seat and had a wonderful trip.  The young lady next to me was an art student from Evergreen College in Washington and was reading a book  on the communication processes in the various arts.  I had once taught a course in that area so we chatted about art, generally, art as it relates to two dimensional painting (her specialty) as it relates to sculpture, puppetry, and theatre.  The flight went very quickly and we seemed to be dropping into Chicago in almost no time at all.

I had been very concerned about my flight being re-routed to Chicago.  I am among the millions who have missed connections in Chicago because-- -well, just because.

The plane had just opened its doors when a little tiny young lady about five feet tall, jumped into the aisle and paged me on the speaker system.  Was soon as I identified my self she told me that she would wait for me at the door.  I figured "okay" and gathered my gear together to move up the aisle.  As I reached the door, she grabbed an arm and shoved me into a wheel chair, stuffed my carry on between my feet, my cane behind it  and my laptop into my lap (logical enough) then checked my boarding pass. 

"Your flight is already boarding" she stated in some sore to slavic accent.  She then started me up the ramp like a shot. 

I have to say that this little bitty lady handled my 235 pounds plus baggage better than anyone I have ever seen.  I am not sure what her genetic and work background is, but I wouldn't want to do anything to make her angry.  I also wouldn't want to compete against her in a marathon.   My flight came in on D and my next one went out on C so I had assumed that they were fairly close together.  Not so.  I know for an absolute fact that without that little lady I would probably still be in Chicago.  When we got to the gate, she ignored the line, shoved my boarding pass in the bar code reader and zipped me down the ramp.  At the bottom she pulled out a little PDA type gizmo that had my name, already had the box checked for excellent service, and asked me to sign it with a stylus.  I had to grab her arm to slow her down long enough to give her a tip.

I settled down in my seat after a small journey down the aisle, had to move when I discovered that I had misread 16 C to be 18 C and settled down for a very fine lflight.  My seatmates were a very interesting lady from Kenosha., Wisconsin who had two sons at BYU, and may have been a Mormon, but I rather doubt it.  She is currently a student of acupuncture at some oriental school   of acupuncture so she spoke to us in Mandarin (she doesn't have to learn the language, but she needs to learn the names of herbs, body parts and contact points in Chinese.)  The other lady was a student of architecture at one of hte Illinois Universities, and she too had a lot of interesting information.  We all napped a bit but the plane arrived in Salt Lake on time, my son was there to meet me in the car I had arranged and I was whisked to the home of relatives, where I watched the end of the Gator Bowl and clumped off to sleep.   Actually to toss and turn and finally wake up to work on my speech for the funeral.  I was really struck with how different the two days of travel seemed to be.

More later (again)


At 10:52 PM, Blogger Patrick Joubert Conlon said...

Of course you know that you're a brilliant writer. The last two posts had me on the edge of my seat. But I still wish you would calm down and leave the drama and unpredictability to the younguns as I did many moons ago. It all emanates from the mind.

But I think you enjoy the drama. Meantime I feel exhausted just reading about it. At least you're never boring - to me at least. I'd love to have known you.

At 7:10 PM, Blogger Three Score and Ten or more said...

You never can tell. I spend a lot of time in the Oregon/Washington area. I figure I have a year or three left to meet new folks.


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